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Mesa (Medicine)

Mesa (pronounced: meh-sah) is a term used in the field of medicine to refer to a flat or gently sloping elevated area. The term is derived from the Spanish word 'mesa', which translates to 'table' in English. In a medical context, it is often used to describe certain anatomical structures or conditions that resemble a mesa in shape or appearance.


The term 'mesa' is of Spanish origin, where it literally means 'table'. It was adopted into the English language in the 18th century and has been used in various scientific and medical contexts since then.

Related Terms

  • Plateau: A term often used interchangeably with mesa, but typically refers to a larger flat or gently sloping elevated area.
  • Butte: A term used to describe a smaller, more isolated flat-topped hill or mountain.
  • Papule: A small, raised, solid pimple or swelling on the skin, often forming part of a rash and seen in conditions like psoriasis or dermatitis which can sometimes resemble a mesa in shape.
  • Plaque: In dermatology, a plaque is a broad, raised area on the skin, often with a flat top like a mesa. It is seen in conditions like psoriasis or eczema.

Usage in Medicine

In medicine, the term 'mesa' is often used to describe the appearance of certain anatomical structures or conditions. For example, in dermatology, a skin lesion that is flat-topped and broad might be described as a 'mesa'. Similarly, in radiology, a flat-topped appearance seen on imaging might also be referred to as a 'mesa'.

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