Trend Watch

Melania Trump Undergoes 'Embolization'

Lookups surge over 145,000% after surgery news

Embolization was among our top lookups on the 14th of May, 2018, after First Lady Melania Trump underwent a medical procedure to deal with a benign kidney condition.

Spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said in a statement that Mrs. Trump, 48, underwent an embolization procedure to treat the kidney condition.
Reuters (, 14 May 2018

We give definitions for two medical senses of embolization: "the process by which or state in which a blood vessel or organ is obstructed by the lodgment of a material mass (as an embolus)," and "an operation in which pellets are introduced into the circulatory system in order to induce embolization in specific abnormal blood vessels." An embolus is "an abnormal particle (such as an air bubble) circulating in the blood."

Both embolus (the plural of which is emboli) and embolization may be traced to the Greek embolos, meaning "wedge-shaped object, stopper." Neither is directly related to bolus, a word with several medical and non-medical meanings (such as "a dose of a substance (such as a drug) given intravenously" and "a soft mass of chewed food"). Bolus comes from the Greek bōlos, meaning "lump."

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