Definitions

failure

kidney failure

or renal failure

Partial or complete loss of kidney function. Acute failure causes reduced urine output and blood chemical imbalance, including uremia. Most patients recover within six weeks. Damage to various kidney structures can result from chemical exposure, major blood loss, crush injury, hypertension, severe burns, severe kidney infections, diabetes mellitus, renal artery or urinary tract blockage, and liver diseases. Complications include heart failure, pulmonary edema, and high potassium levels. Chronic failure usually results from long-term kidney diseases. The blood becomes too acidic, bones can lose calcium, and nerves can degenerate. The kidneys can sustain life until they lose about 90percnt of their function. If one is removed, the other increases in size and function to compensate. Failure of both usually requires dialysis or kidney transplant.

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Inability of one or both sides of the heart to pump enough blood for the body. Causes include pulmonary heart disease, hypertension, and coronary atherosclerosis. A person with left-sided heart failure experiences shortness of breath after exertion, difficulty in breathing while lying down and night breathlessness, and abnormally high pressure in the pulmonary veins. A person with right-sided failure experiences abnormally high pressure in the systemic veins, liver enlargement, and accumulation of fluid in the legs. A person with failure of both ventricles has an enlarged heart and a three-beat heartbeat. Treatment includes bed rest, medications such as digitalis, control of excess salt and water retention, and elimination of the underlying cause. Seealso congestive heart failure.

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Failure-oblivious computing is a technique that enables computer programs to continue executing despite memory errors. The technique handles attempts to read invalid memory by returning a manufactured value to the program, and it ignores invalid writes. This is a great contrast to typical memory checkers, which inform the program of the error or abort the program. In failure-oblivious computing, no attempt is made to inform the program that an error occurred.

Failure-oblivious computing was developed by Martin Rinard and other researchers at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. They introduced the concept at the 6th Symposium on Operating Systems Design and Implementation in 2004.

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