Glossary

Looking for rheumatic disease types, treatments, and associated rheumatology definitions? From abatacept to WOMAC, learn about common terms related to arthritis and rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases. Looking for MACRA terms and definitions?

Abatacept (Orencia)

Selective co-stimulation modulator used to reduce signs and symptoms, induce major clinical response, inhibit progression of structural damage, and improve physical function in adults with moderate to severe active rheumatoid arthritis; may be used as monotherapy or concomitantly with disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs other than tumor necrosis factor (TNF) antagonists. Also used to reduce signs and symptoms in pediatric patients ≥6 years of age with moderate to severe active polyarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis; may be used as monotherapy or concomitantly with methotrexate.

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Activities of daily living

Everyday routines generally involving functional mobility and personal care, such as bathing, dressing, toileting, and meal preparation.

Adalimumab (Humira)

Monoclonal antibody/tumor necrosis factor (TNF) blocker used to reduce signs/symptoms, induce major clinical response, inhibit progression of structural damage, and improve physical function in adults with moderate to severe active rheumatoid arthritis with/without methotrexate (MTX) or other nonbiologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs). Used to reduce signs/symptoms of moderate to severe active polyarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis in pediatric patients ≥4 years of age with/without MTX. Used to reduce signs/symptoms in adults with active ankylosing spondylitis. Used to reduce signs/symptoms, inhibit progression of structural damage, and improve physical function in adults with active psoriatic arthritis with/without nonbiologic DMARDs. Used to reduce signs/symptoms and induce/maintain clinical remission in adults with moderate to severe active Crohn’s disease with inadequate response to conventional therapy and lost response/intolerance to infliximab. Used as treatment of adults with moderate to severe chronic plaque psoriasis who are candidates for systemic or phototherapy, and when other systemic therapies are medically less appropriate. Used to induce and sustain clinical remission in adults with moderate to severe active ulcerative colitis with inadequate response to immunosuppressants.

Adherence

The extent to which a patient continues an agreed-upon mode of treatment without close supervision.

Adhesion molecules

Molecules involved in T helper accessory cell, T helper B cell, and T cytotoxic target cell interactions; extracellular matrix proteins that attract leukocytes from the circulation.

Adhesive capsulitis

Condition in which joint motion becomes restricted because of inflammatory thickening of the capsule; a common cause of shoulder stiffness.

Adult-onset Still’s disease

Rare type of arthritis that features a sore throat, a salmon-colored rash, and a high fever that spikes once or twice a day. Joint pain tends to develop a few weeks after these initial signs and symptoms. The cause is unknown, but researchers are investigating the possibility that it might be triggered by some type of infection. Some people experience just one episode of disease. In other people, the condition persists or recurs.

Aggrecanase

Enzyme found in cartilage that degrades the extracellular matrix, especially cartilage.

Amyloidosis

Disease characterized by extracellular accumulation of amyloid in various organs and tissues of the body.

Anakinra (Kineret)

Biologic drug approved for treatment of moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Blocks the activity of interleukin-1, a protein involved in RA that can trigger an autoimmune response and cause damage to joints and tissues. Can help slow down joint damage and ease RA symptoms like pain or swelling. Given as a shot under the skin, and comes in prefilled syringes so patients may give themselves shots at home. It is taken once a day at the same time each day.

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