Definition: A genus of leeches (class Hirudinea, family Gnathobdellidae). Species previously used in medicine are: Hirudo australis, Australian leech; Hirudo decora, American leech; Hirudo interrupta or Hirudo troctina, a North African leech; Hirudo medicinalis, speckled, Swedish, or German leech, the species previously in most general use; Hirudo m. officinalis, a variety of the preceding; Hirudo provincialis, the green or Hungarian leech; Hirudo quinquestriata, five-striped leech.
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Examples: glitazone, GI cocktail, etc.