Rheumatoid Arthritis Medications Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Rheumatoid Arthritis Medications article.

Abdominal: Relating to the abdomen, the belly, that part of the body that contains all of ...

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Abdominal pain: Pain in the belly. Abdominal pain can be acute or chronic. It may reflect ...

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Abnormal: Outside the expected norm, or uncharacteristic of a particular patient.

Absorption: Uptake. For example, intestinal absorption is the uptake of food (or other sub...

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Acetaminophen: A nonaspirin pain reliever or analgesic. Acetaminophen may be given alone t...

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Acyclovir: (Brand name: Zovirax) One of a group of antiviral drugs that acts against the...

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Agranulocytosis: A marked decrease in the number of granulocytes. Granulocytes are a type...

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Alcoholism: Physical dependence on alcohol to the extent that stopping alcohol use would b...

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Allergy: A misguided reaction to foreign substances by the immune system, the body system ...

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Anemia: The condition of having a lower-than-normal number of red blood cells or quantity ...

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Aplastic anemia: Anemia due to failure of the bone marrow to produce red and white blood c...

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Arthritis: Inflammation of a joint. When joints are inflamed they can develop stiffness, w...

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Aspirin: Once the Bayer trademark for acetylsalicylic acid, now the common name for this a...

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Asthma: A common lung disorder in which inflammation causes the bronchi to swell and narro...

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Autoimmune: Pertaining to autoimmunity, a misdirected immune response that occurs when the...

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Bacterial: Of or pertaining to bacteria, as in a bacterial lung infection.

Birth control: Birth control is the use of any practices, methods, or devices to prevent p...

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Blood clot: A mass of coagulated blood. A blood clot can block a major blood vessel, causi...

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Blood clots: Blood that has been converted from a liquid to a solid state. Also called a t...

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Blood glucose: The main sugar that the body makes from the food in the diet. Glucose is ca...

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Blood pressure: The blood pressure is the pressure of the blood within the arteries. It is...

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Blood sugar: Blood glucose. See also: High blood sugar; Low blood sugar.

Bone marrow: The soft blood-forming tissue that fills the cavities of bones and contains f...

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Breastfeeding: Feeding a child human breast milk. According to the American Academy of Ped...

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Breathing: The process of respiration, during which air is inhaled into the lungs through ...

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Bypass: An operation in which a new pathway is created for the transport of substances in ...

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Cancer: An abnormal growth of cells which tend to proliferate in an uncontrolled way and, ...

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Cardiac: Having to do with the heart.

Cardiovascular: Relating to the circulatory system, which comprises the heart and blood ve...

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Cell: The basic structural and functional unit of any living thing. Each cell is a small c...

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Chills: feelings of coldness accompanied by shivering. Chills may develop after exposure t...

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Cholesterol: The most common type of steroid in the body. Cholesterol has a reputation for...

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Chronic: In medicine, lasting a long time. A chronic condition is one that lasts 3 months ...

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Coagulation: In medicine, the clotting of blood. The process by which the blood clots to f...

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Colitis: Inflammation of the large intestine (the colon). There are many forms of coliti...

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Conception: 1. The union of the sperm and the ovum. Synonymous with fertilization.
...

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Constipation: Infrequent and frequently incomplete bowel movements. Constipation is the op...

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COPD: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Any disorder that persistently obstructs bron...

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Corticosteroid: Any of the steroid hormones made by the outer portion (cortex) of the adre...

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Cortisone: A naturally occurring adrenocorticoid hormone that is produced in minute amount...

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Cough: A rapid expulsion of air from the lungs, typically in order to clear the lung airwa...

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Cox-1: Cyclooxygenase-1, an enzyme that acts to speed up the production of certain chemica...

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Cox-2: Cyclooxygenase-2, an enzyme that acts to speed up the production of certain chemica...

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Cox-2 inhibitor: An antiinflammatory drug that selectively blocks the cox-2 enzyme. Blocki...

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Cyclooxygenase-2: Cyclooxygenase-2, an enzyme that acts to speed up the production of cert...

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Deep vein thrombosis: A blood clot within a deep vein, typically in the thigh or leg. The ...

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Dermatitis: Inflammation of the skin, either due to direct contact with an irritating sub...

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Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease; the identification of an illness. 2 A ...

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Diarrhea: A common condition that involves unusually frequent and liquid bowel movements. ...

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Edema: The swelling of soft tissues as a result of excess fluid accumulation. Edema is oft...

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Embolism: The obstruction of a blood vessel by a foreign substance or a blood clot that tr...

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Enzyme: A protein (or protein-based molecule) that speeds up a chemical reaction in a livi...

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Enzymes: Proteins that act as a catalysts in mediating and speeding a specific chemical re...

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Erythromycin: Erythromycin is a common antibiotic for treating bacterial infection. Sold...

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Escherichia coli: Full term for E. coli, the colon bacillus.

Essential: In medicine, of unknown cause, as in essential hypertension (high blood pressur...

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Exacerbate: To make worse. For example, smoking may exacerbate lung disease.

Exacerbation: A worsening. In medicine, exacerbation may refer to an increase in the sever...

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Father: (1) The male parent. (2) One who originates. For example, "Wilhelm Roentgen is con...

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Fatigue: A condition characterized by a lessened capacity for work and reduced efficiency ...

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FDA: Food and Drug Administration.

Fever: Although a fever technically is any body temperature above the normal of 98.6 degr...

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Flu: Short for influenza. The flu is caused by viruses that infect the respiratory tract w...

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Folic acid: One of the B vitamins that is a key factor in the synthesis (the making) of nu...

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Food and Drug Administration: An agency within the US Public Health Service that provides ...

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Fungi: Plural of fungus.

Gastric: Having to do with the stomach.

Gastrointestinal: Adjective referring collectively to the stomach and small and large inte...

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Gastropathy: Disease of the stomach, as in hypoproteinemic hypertrophic gastropathy. Gastr...

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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

GI tract: Short for gastrointestinal tract. See: Gastrointestinal tract.

Glaucoma: A common eye condition in which the fluid pressure inside the eyes rises becaus...

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Glucose: The simple sugar that is the chief source of energy. Glucose is found in the bloo...

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Gout: Condition characterized by abnormally elevated levels of uric acid in the blood, rec...

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Headache: A pain in the head with the pain being above the eyes or the ears, behind the he...

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Heart: The muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. ...

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Heart attack: The death of heart muscle due to the loss of blood supply. The loss of bloo...

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Heart disease: Any disorder that affects the heart. Sometimes the term "heart disease" is ...

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Heart failure: Inability of the heart to keep up with the demands on it and, specifically...

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Heparin: An anticoagulant (anti-clotting) medication. Heparin is useful in preventing thro...

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High blood pressure: A repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceeding 140 over 90 mmHg. Chro...

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Hypertension: High blood pressure, defined as a repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceedi...

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Ibuprofen: A nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is commonly used to treat pa...

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IL-1: Interleukin-1.

Immune: Protected against infection, usually by the presence of antibodies.

Immune response: Any reaction by the immune system. For example, poison ivy can cause an i...

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Immune system: A complex system that is responsible for distinguishing a person from every...

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Immunization: Vaccination. Immunizations work by stimulating the immune system, the natur...

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Immunosuppressant: An agent that can suppress or prevent the immune response. Immunosuppre...

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Infarction: The formation of an infarct, an area of tissue death, due to a local lack of o...

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Infection: The invasion and multiplication of microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, an...

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Inflammation: A localized reaction that produces redness, warmth, swelling, and pain as a ...

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Interleukin-1: A protein produced by various cells, including macrophages, interleukin-1 ...

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Internal medicine: The medical specialty dedicated to the diagnosis and medical treatment ...

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Iron: An essential mineral. Iron is necessary for the transport of oxygen (via hemoglobin ...

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Itching: An uncomfortable sensation in the skin that feels as if something is crawling on ...

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Joint: The area where two bones are attached for the purpose of permitting body parts to m...

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Juvenile: Between infantile and adult. Used in medicine to indicate onset in childhood, as...

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Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis: See: Arthritis, systemic-onset juvenile rheumatoid.

Kidney: One of a pair of organs located in the right and left side of the abdomen. The kid...

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Leg: In popular usage, the part of the body from the top of the thigh down to the foot, an...

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Liver: The largest solid organ in the body, situated in the upper part of the abdomen on t...

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Liver disease: Liver disease refers to any disorder of the liver. The liver is a large org...

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Lungs: The lungs are a pair of breathing organs located with the chest which remove carbon...

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Lupus: A chronic inflammatory disease that is caused by autoimmunity. Patients with lupus ...

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Lymphoma: A tumor of the lymphoid tissue. The major types of lymphoma are Hodgkin's diseas...

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Malaise: A vague feeling of discomfort, one that cannot be pinned down but is often sensed...

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Marrow: The bone marrow.

Mouth: 1. The upper opening of the digestive tract, beginning with the lips and con...

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Muscle: Muscle is the tissue of the body which primarily functions as a source of power. T...

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Mycobacterium: A large family of bacteria that have unusually waxy cell walls that are res...

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Mycobacterium tuberculosis: The bacterium that causes tuberculosis. M. tuberculosis has un...

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Myocardial infarction: A heart attack. Abbreviated MI.

Nausea: Stomach queasiness, the urge to vomit. Nausea can be brought on by many causes, in...

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Necrosis: The death of living cells or tissues. Necrosis can be due, for example, to ische...

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NSAID: Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, a medication that is commonly prescribed or pu...

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Osteoporosis: Thinning of the bones, with reduction in bone mass, due to depletion of calc...

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Pain: An unpleasant sensation that can range from mild, localized discomfort to agony. Pa...

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Penicillin: The most famous of all antibiotics, named for the fungal mold Penicillium n...

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Peptic ulcer: An ulcer in the lining of the stomach, duodenum, or esophagus. Peptic ulcers...

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Pharmacist: A professional who fills prescriptions and, in the case of a compounding pharm...

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Pharmacy: A location where prescription medications are sold. A pharmacy is constantly sup...

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Placebo: A "sugar pill" or any dummy medication or treatment.

Pneumonia: Inflammation of one or both lungs, with dense areas of lung inflammation. Pneum...

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Porphyria: One of a variety of hereditary diseases that are characterized by abnormalities...

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Potassium: The major positive ion (cation) found inside cells. The chemical notation for p...

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Predispose: To make more likely or render susceptible. Smoking predisposes to a number of ...

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Pregnancy: The state of carrying a developing embryo or fetus within the female body. Thi...

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Pregnant: The state of carrying a developing fetus within the body.

Prescription: A physician's order for the preparation and administration of a drug or dev...

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Prostaglandin: One of a number of hormone-like substances that participate in a wide range...

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Protein: One of the three nutrients used as energy sources (calories) by the body. Protein...

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Proteins: Large molecules composed of one or more chains of amino acids in a specific orde...

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Psoriasis: A reddish, scaly rash often located over the surfaces of the elbows, knees, sca...

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Psoriatic arthritis: Joint inflammation that is associated with psoriasis. Psoriatic arthr...

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Puberty: Adolescence, the period in which the human body first becomes capable of reproduc...

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Pulmonary: Having to do with the lungs.

Pulmonary embolism: Sudden closure of a pulmonary artery or one of its branches, caused by...

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Pulmonary fibrosis: Scarring throughout the lungs that can be caused by many conditions, s...

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Radiation: 1. Rays of energy. Gamma rays and X-rays are two of the types of energy ...

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Range of motion: The full movement potential of a joint, usually its range of flexion and ...

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Rash: Breaking out (eruption) of the skin. A rash can be caused by an underlying medical c...

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Regimen: A plan or a regulated course, such as a diet, exercise, or treatment, that is des...

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Renal: Having to do with the kidney. For example, renal cancer is cancer of the kidneys.

Respiratory: Having to do with respiration.

Reye syndrome: A sudden, sometimes fatal, disease of the brain (encephalopathy) with degen...

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Rheumatoid arthritis: An autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation of joint...

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Rheumatology: A subspecialty of internal medicine that involves the nonsurgical evaluation...

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Shortness of breath: Difficulty in breathing. Medically referred to as dyspnea. Shortness ...

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Sinus: 1. An air-filled cavity in a dense portion of a skull bone. The sinuses decr...

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Sodium: The major positive ion (cation) in the fluid surrounding cells in the body. The ch...

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Sore: 1. (adjective) A popular term for painful, such as a sore throat. 2. (...

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Sore throat: Pain in the throat. Sore throat may be caused by many different causes, inclu...

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Statins: A class of drugs that lower cholesterol.

Stomach: The digestive organ that is located in the upper abdomen, under the ribs. The upp...

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Stress: In a medical or biological context stress is a physical, mental, or emotional fact...

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Stroke: The sudden death of brain cells due to lack of oxygen, caused by blockage of blood...

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Surgery: The branch of medicine that employs operations in the treatment of disease or inj...

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Syndrome: A combination of symptoms and signs that together represent a disease process.

Taste: A perception that results from stimulation of a gustatory nerve. Taste belongs to t...

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Tension: 1) The pressure within a vessel, such as blood pressure: the pressure within t...

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Therapy: The treatment of disease. Therapy is synonymous with treatment.

Throat: The throat is the anterior (front) portion of the neck beginning at the back of th...

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Thrombosis: The formation or presence of a blood clot in a blood vessel. The vessel may be...

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Toxicity: The degree to which a substance (a toxin or poison) can harm humans or animals. ...

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Tuberculosis: A highly contagious infection caused by the bacterium called Mycobacterium ...

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Tumor: An abnormal mass of tissue. Tumors are a classic sign of inflammation, and can be ...

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Tumor necrosis factor: One of multiple proteins capable of inducing necrosis (death) of tu...

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Tylenol: See: Acetaminophen.

Ulcer: A lesion that is eroding away the skin or mucous membrane. Ulcers can have various ...

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Urine: Liquid waste produced by the kidneys. Urine is a clear, transparent fluid that norm...

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Vaccines: Microbial preparations of killed or modified microorganisms that can stimulate a...

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Vein: A blood vessel that carries blood that is low in oxygen content from the body back t...

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Vessel: A tube in the body that carries fluids. Examples of vessels are blood vessels and ...

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Viral: Of or pertaining to a virus. For example, if a person has a viral rash, the rash wa...

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Viruses: Small living particles that can infect cells and change how the cells function. I...

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Vitamin K: One of two naturally occurring fat-soluble vitamins (vitamin K1 and vitamin K2)...

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Vitamins: The word "vitamin" was coined in 1911 by the Warsaw-born biochemist Casimir Funk...

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Voluntary: Done in accordance with the conscious will of the individual. The opposite of i...

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Vomit: Matter from the stomach that has come up into and may be ejected beyond the mouth, ...

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Warfarin: An anticoagulant drug (brand names: Coumarin, Panwarfin, Sofarin) taken to prev...

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Wheezing: A whistling noise in the chest during breathing. Wheezing occurs when the airway...

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Zovirax: Brand name of Acyclovir.

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