Biology Prefixes and Suffixes: Cephal-, Cephalo-

Bigfin Reef Squid
Bbioluminescence is common in several species of squid (cephalopod) such as this bigfin reef squid. Sha/Moment Open/Getty Images

The word part cephal- or cephalo- means head. Variants of this affix include (-cephalic), (-cephalus), and (-cephaly).

Words Beginning With (Cephal-) or (Cephalo-)

Cephalad (cephal-ad): Cephalad is a directional term used in anatomy to indicate positioning toward the head or anterior end of the body.

Cephalalgia (cephal-algia): Pain located in or near the head is called cephalalgia. It is also known as a headache.

Cephalic (cephal-ic): Cephalic means of or relating to the head, or located near the head.

Cephalin (cephal-in): Cephalin is a type of cell membrane phospholipid found in body cells, particularly in brain and spinal cord tissue. It is also the main phospholipid in bacteria.

Cephalization (cephal-ization): In animal development, this term refers to the development of a highly specialized brain that processes sensory input and controls body functions.

Cephalocele (cephalo-cele): A cephalocele is a protrusion of part of the brain and meninges through an opening in the skull.

Cephalogram (cephalo-gram): A cephalogram is an X-ray of the head and facial area. It assists in obtaining accurate measurements of the jaw and facial bones and is also used as a diagnostic tool for conditions such as obstructive sleep apnea.

Cephalohematoma (cephalo-hemat-oma): A cephalohematoma is a pool of blood that collects under the scalp. It typically occurs in infants and results from pressure during the birthing process.

Cephalometry (cephalo-metry): The scientific measurement of the bones of the head and face is called cephalometry. Measurements are often taken using radiographic imaging.

Cephalopathy (cephalo-pathy): Also called encephalopathy, this term refers to any disease of the brain.

Cephaloplegia (cephalo-plegia): This condition is characterized by paralysis that occurs in the muscles of the head or neck.

Cephalopod (cephalo-pod): Cephalopods are invertebrate animals, including squid and octopuses, that appear to have limbs or feet that are attached to their heads.

Cephalothorax (cephalo-thorax): The fused head and thorax section of the body seen in many arthropods and crustaceans is known as the cephalothorax.

Words With (-cephal-), (-cephalic), (-cephalus), or (-cephaly)

Brachycephalic (brachy-cephalic): This term refers to individuals with skull bones that are shortened in length resulting in a short, broad head.

Encephalitis (en-cephal-itis): Encephalitis is a condition characterized by inflammation of the brain, typically caused by viral infection. Viruses that cause encephalitis include measles, chickenpox, mumps, HIV, and herpes simplex.

Hydrocephalus (hydro-cephalus): Hydrocephalus is an abnormal condition of the head in which the cerebral ventricles expand, causing fluid to accumulate in the brain.

Leptocephalus (lepto-cephalus): This term means "slim head" and refers to having an abnormally tall and narrow skull.

Megacephaly (mega-cephaly): This condition is characterized by the development of an abnormally large head.

Megalencephaly (mega-en-cephaly): Megalencephaly is the development of an abnormally large brain. Individuals with this condition may experience seizures, paralysis, and decreased cognitive function.

Mesocephalic (meso-cephalic): Mesocephalic refers to having a head that is of a medium size.

Microcephaly (micro-cephaly): This condition is characterized by an abnormally small head in relation to body size. Microcephaly is a congenital condition that can be caused by chromosome mutation, exposure to toxins, maternal infections, or trauma.

Plagiocephaly (plagio-cephaly): Plagiocephaly is a skull deformity in which the head appears asymmetrical with flat regions. This condition occurs in babies and results from abnormal closure of cranial sutures.

Procephalic (pro-cephalic): This directional anatomy term describes a position located near the front of the head.