Cells continuously adapt to internal and environmental stimuli and stresses. If the cell is no longer able to adapt, then cell injury results, either reversible or leading to cell death, necrosis.
Injury that cannot be limited at the cellular level calls forth an inflammatory response. If the stimulus is terminated, then the acute reaction subsides and there is usually healing and regeneration of the tissue, although specialized tissue such as the brain is replaced by scar tissue. If stimulus and inflammation continue, then a chronic phase follows. Regeneration and repair are attempted, with scarring the almost inevitable result.
Special types of inflammation include allergic inflammation, granulomatous inflammation (tuberculosis or foreign body reactions), ulceration (the loss of the lining or surface of an organ), and abscess formation (accumulation of pus in solid tissues).
These cellular and tissue reactions to stresses and stimuli result in a wide variety of disease states, falling into the following broad categories: congenital defects, trauma, infectious disease, metabolic and nutritional disease, degenerative disease, immunologic disease, circulatory disorders, and neoplastic disease.
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