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 information about MACRA? See MACRA terms and definitions.


Leflunomide (Arava)

Used for treating rheumatoid arthritis by reducing signs and symptoms, improving physical function, and preventing the development of structural damage to the joints. Leflunomide is a pyrimidine synthesis inhibitor, and is thought to work by blocking certain enzymes responsible for abnormal tissue development or growth.

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Longitudinal study

Study of the natural course of life or disorder in which a cohort of subjects is serially observed over a period of time and no assumptions need to be made about the stability of the system.

Low back pain

A common, painful condition affecting the lower portion of the spine caused by injury to a muscle (strain) or ligament (sprain). Common causes include improper lifting, poor posture, lack of regular exercise, fracture, ruptured disk, or arthritis. Most low back pain goes away on its own in two to four weeks. Severe cases may require surgery.

Lupus nephritis

Glomerulonephritis occurring in some patients with systemic lupus erythematosus, characterized by hematuria and a progressive course culminating in renal failure, often without hypertension.

Lyme disease

Subacute inflammatory disorder caused by infection with Borrelia burgdorferi; the characteristic skin lesion, erythema chronicum migrans, is usually preceded or accompanied by fever, malaise, fatigue, headache, and stiff neck.

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