A common mild pain reliever and fever reducer. For example, Tylenol®.
A way to help you relax by breathing slowly and deeply or “belly breathing.” Helps get oxygen to the lower parts of your lungs and throughout your body.
The part of a medication which has an actual effect on your body.
Pain that comes on suddenly and disappears quickly
Also known as Humira®. A type of arthritis medication called a “biologic agent.” Works by blocking chemicals called “cytokines” which promote inflammation. It is usually given every two weeks by injection under the skin.
A natural substance that’s released into your body when you are stressed out, afraid, excited, or in pain. It can increase breathing and heart rate and make it difficult to relax. Also called epinephrine.
Advanced Practice Nurse
A Registered Nurse (RN) who has extra training and specialized experience.
Alternative medicine –
Any therapy (usually non-Western) used instead of conventional evidence-based medicine.
Basic “building blocks” that form the proteins in your body.
“Anti-nuclear Antibody.” A group of large proteins produced by the immune system which is directed against the body’s own DNA.
A medicine that makes you feel sleepy, or go to sleep during a procedure (general anesthesia) or numbs a particular part of your body (local anesthesia).
A medical doctor who is specially trained to give all types of anaesthesia.
Also known as Kineret®. A type of arthritis medication called a “biologic agent.” Works by blocking chemicals called “cytokines” which promote inflammation. It is usually given every day by injection under the skin.
A condition where the number of red blood cells in your blood is below what it should be, so your blood can’t carry as much oxygen. This can cause you to look pale, and get winded easily, and feel tired.
A type of arthritis that attacks joints in the spine, especially the joints where the spine and pelvis meet in the lower back (sacroiliac joints).
Medications that cure bacterial infections. An antibiotic interferes with the growth of bacteria
A large protein produced and used by the immune system to identify and neutralize foreign objects like bacteria and viruses.
A substance used to relieve inflammation, swelling, stiffness, and pain. For example, ibuprofen (Advil®)
Also known as ANA. A large protein produced by the immune system which is directed against the body’s own DNA.
Inflammation of your joints, which can cause pain, swelling, and stiffness.
Happens when inflammation in your joints or eyes gets significantly worse and won’t settle down.
Sac which surrounds a joint
Antibodies produced by your immune system that attack parts of your own body
A disorder in which your own immune system mistakenly attacks parts of your own body.
An ancient healing practice that originated in India.
A way of preparing for stressful events in advance by imagining the stressful event and using relaxation techniques to relax while imagining.
Also called abdominal breathing. A way to relax by breathing slowly and deeply, getting oxygen to the lower parts of your lungs and throughout your body.
Also called “biologic response modifier,” “biologic drug,” or just “biologic.” A newer category of arthritis medications which target cytokines, chemicals in the immune system which promote inflammation.
See “biologic agent.”
Biologic response modifier
See “biologic agent.”
See “biologic agent.”
A blood test to check for bacteria in your bloodstream. Done to make sure your symptoms aren’t being caused by a bacterial infection.
A reaction to pressures on you which affects your body. Body stress includes stomach and headaches, not sleeping well, fast heartbeat, sweatiness, and tight muscles.
A measurement of how much calcium is in your bones, and therefore how strong they are and how likely they are to fracture.
Bone density test
A test that uses low-level X-rays to find out how much calcium is in your bones.
A series of pictures of your skeleton taken to look at any usual activity in your bones. A bone scan can show arthritis, a fracture or other abnormal parts of bones.. This test takes several hours to finish
A device used to keep a joint in one position.
Name for a drug given by the company that produces it.
A bony bump at the base of your big toe (or can be around the fifth toe) that may be painful and swollen. The bunion is an abnormal growth of bone, not arthritis.
Semi-clear, tough, smooth elastic tissue that lines the ends of bones, allowing easy movement.
Thickening of the lens of your eye which eventually causes cloudy vision.
Way of thinking in which you believe something is much worse than it actually is.
Also called Celebrex®. A non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) which reduces inflammation by blocking a large protein called COX-2.
A shallow, fast way of breathing using chest and neck muscles. It limits the amount of oxygen getting into your lungs and to your body.
A type of image of your chest taken using low levels of radiation. It is done prior to starting on any biologic agent to make sure you do not have tuberculosis, and at other times to look for infection.
A healing practice based on realigning the soft tissues of the body, and bones and joints.
A type of natural fat normally found in your blood and other cells in your body.
Pain that lasts for a long period of time, or even a lifetime.
A strong pain relieving medication that belongs to a group called opioid analgesics. It may make you feel sleepy or breathe a bit more slowly.
Cognitive behavioural strategies
A strategy used to help you think about experiences in a more positive way.
Using medications together (at the same time) to control arthritis activity.
These are therapies which are not part of standard Western medical treatment. They can be used along with other therapies (medication, physio) to provide better symptom relief.
Complete blood count
A very common blood test. Shows the amount of different types of blood cells (red and white, platelets) and what they look like.
Difficulty having bowel movements because they are hard or dry.
Able to be spread from one person to another.
Dye used in some diagnostic X-ray tests. Makes parts of your body more visible under X-ray.
“Standard” or “traditional” way of treating disease. Practiced by medical doctors and other members of your health care team.
Hormones with many actions on the body, including balancing salt and water in the body, helping to respond to stress properly, and helping to manage inflammation. Corticosteroids can be natural (made by the body in the adrenal gland), or synthetic (a medication with the same actions as the natural substance). Some forms of corticosteroid are given as arthritis medications to decrease inflammation in your joints.
One type of corticosteroid hormone which reduces inflammation.
Pictures of different “slices” of your body taken by a CT or MRI machine. These can give lots of details about what’s going on in your joints.
Chemicals in the immune system which help fight infections and promote inflammation.
“Sausage” finger or toe; Inflammation of tendons in the fingers and toes which can make them look sausage-like because of swelling.
Feeling sad, discouraged, or hopeless about yourself, the world, or the future. Sometimes it can lessen your motivation to do things, and you may have trouble with sleeping or eating too much or too little. It can be mild and pass quickly, or it can be very severe and hang on for a long time.
A man-made corticosteroid hormone used to reduce inflammation in arthritis.
A process of identifying a disease based on symptoms and various tests.
A non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) which reduces arthritis inflammation
A health care professional who is trained to give reliable, evidence-based advice on diet, food, and nutrition.
Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs
Also known as DMARDs. Slow acting medications which interfere with the inflammation process and help prevent damage to your joints.
Strategies to help manage pain, stiffness, and stress by redirecting your attention to something more pleasant or interesting.
Also known as disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs. Slow acting medications which interfere with the inflammation process and help prevent damage to your joints. Examples of DMARDs include: methotrexate, sulfasalazine, hydroxychloroquine, and leflunomide.
Dosage or dose
The prescribed amount of a medication to be taken over a period of time. For example, 500 mg per day or 10 mg once per week.
Stands for Eutetic Mixture of Local Anesthetics. The brand name for a special cream that numbs the skin before a painful procedure like a blood test.
An overinflation of a portion of the lungs. Emphysema reduces the elasticity of the lung and may prevent adequate emptying of the lungs.
Chemicals produced naturally by your brain and spinal cord to reduce pain, and released when you experience stress.
Places where tendons attach to bones.
Inflammation of the entheses, places where tendons attach to bones.
A kind of arthritis that causes inflammation of both joints and entheses. Enthesitis means inflammation of the places where the ligaments or tendons attach to bone (entheses).
Critical substances that help build and break down other substances in your body. For example, enzymes help you digest food and make energy.
Erythrocyte sedimentation rate
Also called ESR. A blood test that checks how quickly red blood cells settle to the bottom of a test tube. It is often increased when there is inflammation in your body.
Stands for Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate. A blood test that checks how quickly red blood cells settle to the bottom of a test tube. It is often increased when there is inflammation in your body.
Also called Enbrel®. An arthritis medication which belongs to the “biologics” class. Reduces inflammation by blocking a protein called TNF-alpha. Usually given one or two times weekly by injection under the skin.
Medications that your doctor may prescribe initially to try to control your arthritis. These medications usually have the fewest side effects, but may not completely control your arthritis.
When a joint becomes permanently bent after remaining in one position for a long time.
Happens when inflammation in your joints or eyes gets significantly worse.
An abnormal accumulation of fluid in cells, tissues or body cavities that results in swelling.
The ongoing process of monitoring your arthritis.
Invisible radiation waves given off by some radioactive materials, like the contrast medium used in a bone scan. These waves are recorded by a special camera and create a “movie” of your skeleton.
A controlled state of unconsciousness, “sleep,” during which procedures like joint injections may be performed.
A substance which causes you to lose awareness or “go to sleep” during procedures and surgery.
Name for a drug based on its active ingredient. For example, acetaminophen is the generic name for Tylenol®.
Condition that happens when the pressure inside your eye is too high. If it’s not treated, it can cause damage to the optic nerve and vision loss.
Part of a bone where growth takes place.
Unpleasant symptoms such as headaches, nausea, and sensitivity to light, caused by using too much alcohol or drugs
Burning feeling in your chest, caused by a little bit of stomach acid backing up from your stomach into the food tube (esophagus).
Protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen.
Stands for Histocompatibility Locus Antigens or Human Leukocyte Antigens. Proteins that control how your immune system responds to foreign cells as well as its own.
A specific protein on white blood cells which is linked to some kinds of arthritis in young people.
Related to an alternative/complementary therapy based on healing “like with like” using natural substances.
Chemical produced by your body and released into your blood to regulate various processes. Hormones can be used as medications.
Human leukocyte antigen
Also called HLA. Proteins that control how your immune system responds to foreign cells as well as its own.
Also called Plaquenil®. A mild arthritis medication belonging to the DMARD group; it is a slow acting drug which reduces pain, stiffness, and inflammation in joints.
A non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) commonly used to treat pain, swelling and fever. Also called Advil® and Motrin®.
A strategy for dealing with pain by using your imagination.
Taking pictures of interior parts of your body using a special machine. For example, an X-ray, CT scan, or MRI.
The immune system’s reactions to substances it sees as foreign.
A complex network of cells and organs designed to protect your body from foreign invaders, like bacteria and viruses.
Also called Indocid®. A non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) used to reduce pain and swelling in your joints.
Individual education plan
Written plan describing the special education program and/or services that you might need at school.
The body’s immune system response to infection, irritation, or injury. Immune cells rush to the affected body area, which can cause swelling, redness, and/or pain.
Immune cells that are important in fighting infection, but can also cause swelling, redness, and pain in your joints, and can also cause cartilage to break down over time, damaging your joints.
A “biologic” type arthritis medication which reduces inflammation by blocking a large protein called TNF. It is usually given directly into your vein every one to two months.
A process where a medication is given directly into your vein.
Using a syringe and needle to put medication under your skin.
Place on your body where medication is put under your skin.
Also called “joint injections.” Placing medication directly into an inflamed joint to help reduce inflammation quickly. This is done by a doctor.
Abbreviated IV. Small tube placed directly into a vein in your arm or leg in order to give medications.
Inflammation of the coloured part of your eye called the iris and/or ciliary body (anterior structure of the eye).
The coloured ring around the dark pupil in the centre of your eye. It regulates how much light gets into your eye.
Inflammation of the coloured part of your eye called the iris.
Short for intravenous. Small tube placed directly into a vein in your arm or leg in order to give medications.
Stands for Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis. Type of chronic joint inflammation that occurs in children and adolescents and has no known cause. It can cause swelling, tenderness, and pain in your joints, which can affect your growth and development.
Happens when a joint is kept in one position too long, and the muscles, tendons, and ligaments shorten, causing you to not be able to move it like you used to.
Happens when your body sends lots of immune cells to a joint, which causes swelling, redness, warmth, tenderness, and/or pain in that joint.
Also called “intra-articular injections.” Placing medication directly into an inflamed joint to help reduce inflammation quickly. This is done by a doctor.
Stands for juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. An older name for juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). Type of joint inflammation that occurs in children and adolescents and has no known cause. It can cause swelling, tenderness, and pain in your joints, which can affect your growth and development.
Juvenile idiopathic arthritis
Abbreviated JIA. Type of joint inflammation that occurs in children and adolescents and has no known cause. It can cause swelling, tenderness, and pain in your joints, which can affect your growth and development.
Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
Abbreviated JRA. An older name for juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). Type of joint inflammation that occurs in children and adolescents and has no known cause. It can cause swelling, tenderness, and pain in your joints, which can affect your growth and development.
Also called Arava®. A disease-modifiying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) type arthritis medication that works by reducing the number and activation of immune cells which cause inflammation. It is taken once a day as a pill.
Stretchy tissue that connects bones to one another.
Substance that helps your immune system protect yourself from certain infections. The vaccine contains live bacteria or viruses which have been changed so that they won’t cause disease. However, these vaccines may not be safe or work as well while you’re on certain medications.
Medication that numbs a particular area of your body so you do not feel discomfort during a procedure such as a joint injection.
Short for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). A chronic disease that is due to the immune system attacking the body’s cells and tissues. Some of the parts of the body affected include the skin, joints, heart, lungs, blood vessels, liver, kidneys, and nervous system.
Filters that collect and remove waste (like foreign cells and old immune cells) from your body and also contains cells from your immune system (white blood cells).
Magnetic resonance imaging
Abbreviated MRI. Special technique that uses a large magnet, radio waves, and a computer to make detailed pictures of parts of your body.
Abnormal cells that have uncontrolled growth. They can spread to other parts of your body and cause damage. Also known as cancer or tumour.
A technique of focusing your mind in order to relax and feel calm and peaceful.
A substance produced by your body (hormone) that controls your sleep patterns. May be used as a medication for helping with sleep problems or fatigue.
All the chemical processes that occur in your body, like the breaking down of food into energy.
A disease-modifiying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD)-type of arthritis medication that works by reducing the number and activation of immune cells which cause inflammation. It is taken once a week by mouth as a pill or liquid, or under the skin as an injection.
A type of corticosteroid arthritis medication given directly into a vein one to four times per day. Used to reduce inflammation quickly.
Type of stress that causes bad feelings like anger, sadness, anxiety, or hopelessness.
Technique for dealing with negative thinking by recognizing your own thoughts and then letting them go.
A quick way to relax using muscle relaxation and belly breathing.
Loss of a baby within the first twenty weeks after getting pregnant.
A type of pain medication from the opiate family of drugs. Used to reduce pain quickly.
Stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Special technique that uses a large magnet, radio waves, and a computer to make detailed pictures of parts of your body.
An autoimmune disease where the immune system attacks the body’s own nervous system. May cause numbness, dizziness, pain, and problems with walking, thinking, and talking.
A way of relieving stress and tension by loosening your muscles.
Squeezing or tightening of your muscles. May cause muscle pain or fatigue.
Also called Naprosyn® and Aleve®. A non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) type arthritis medication that reduces pain and inflammation by blocking proteins called prostaglandins. It is taken by mouth as a pill or liquid.
Type of health care system that uses nutrition, lifestyle, medicinal plants, and other natural treatments.
The urge to vomit, or bring up the stomach contents through the mouth.
Type of unpleasant sensation caused by nerves sending “pain” messages to your brain even when there is no injury or inflammation.
Addicting ingredient in tobacco (cigarettes).
Temporary type of pain caused by healthy nerves sending a message to your brain about injury or inflammation in your body.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
Abbreviated NSAIDs. Medications such as aspirin and ibuprofen that are used to reduce inflammation and do not contain any corticosteroid as an active ingredient.
Short for Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs. Medications such as aspirin and ibuprofen that are used to reduce inflammation and do not contain any corticosteroid as an active ingredient.
Nuclear medicine technologist
A health care professional who specializes in using radioactive substances to form an image of the body such as in bone scans.
Affecting four joints or fewer.
Type of arthritis causing inflammation in four joints or fewer.
Short for Oligoarticular Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis. Type of arthritis affecting four joints or fewer that occurs in children and adolescents. There is no known cause.
Type of arthritis which affects four joints or fewer at first, then begins to affect five or more joints after six months or so.
Type of arthritis that continues to affect four joints or fewer even after six months or so.
A medical doctor with specialized training in the examination, diagnosis, and treatment of eye diseases.
A family of strong pain relieving medications such as morphine.
Bundle of fibres that send visual signals from your eyes to your brain.
A health care provider who has special training in performing eye examinations, prescribing glasses and fitting contact lenses. They are not medical doctors.
Something that goes inside the bottom of your shoe to help your foot stay aligned and comfortable while you walk.
A professional who makes, fits, and fixes orthotics.
Branch of Western medicine focused on healing the body by treating damaged muscles, bones, and joints.
Thinning and weakening of the bones.
When your body grows too much bone around a joint or broken bone to stabilize it.
Medication you can get without a prescription. For example, Advil® and Gravol®.
Information sent by nerves to your brain that causes you to feel pain.
Information sent by nerves to your brain that causes you to feel pain.
A health care professional who is specially trained to take blood from a vein such as when you need a blood test done.
A health care professional who specializes in monitoring and providing therapy for the movement in individual joints as well as the strength of muscles around the joints. Therapy can include exercise programs or use of assistive devices such as splints or shoe inserts.
Also called Feldene® or Pirox®. A non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)–type of arthritis medication that reduces pain and inflammation by blocking proteins called prostaglandins. It is taken by mouth as a pill or liquid.
A substance in your blood that helps it to clot (thicken) when you have an injury.
Affecting at least five joints.
A disease that causes joint inflammation in at least five joints during the first six months.
A type of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis that causes joint inflammation in at least five joints during the first six months.
Also called Pediapred®. A corticosteroid arthritis medication used to reduce inflammation quickly. It is taken by mouth as a pill or liquid.
A type of steroid. It is used in arthritis by acting on your immune system to reduce swelling.
A written instruction telling a pharmacist how a medication needs to be prepared, dosed and administered.
A skin disease causing a red scaly rash. It can be associated with a type of arthritis called psoriatic arthritis.
A condition in which you have both psoriasis (a skin disease), or a close family member with psoriasis, and arthritis (joint inflammation).
A physician who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of mental, emotional, and behavioural disorders.
The black circular openings in the middle of each eye which regulate how much light can enter the eye by getting larger (lets more light in), or smaller (lets less light in).
Energy waves or particles that can be used to image parts of your body.
Substances that give off energy waves or particles. Radioactive substances may be used to help image parts of your body.
The use of energy waves or particles to study bones and certain organs in your body.
A doctor who is specially trained to read or interpret images such as x-rays, ultrasounds and MRIs which are used to diagnose medical conditions.
Red blood cells
These cells carry oxygen to all parts of your body.
A skill you can learn to help reduce stress and tension in your body.
A period of time when your inflammation has been turned off.
The back lining of your eye, which senses light.
Stands for Rheumatoid Factor. A type of protein produced by some people with arthritis; it can be found by doing a blood test.
Firm, non-painful lumps that can occur over pressure points or on joints like your elbows or knuckles when you have arthritis. The cause is not known, but they are usually harmless.
A branch of medicine that studies arthritis and other inflammatory conditions that affect the joints, muscles, bones, and other organs and tissues.
A medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of arthritis and other inflammatory conditions that affect the joints, muscles, bones, and other organs and tissues.
An arthritis medication belonging to the “biologic” group. It works by destrying B-cells in your immune system, which can cause inflammation. It is given by IV, ( a tube that is inserted into the vein).
Someone who writes for you when you are not able due to arthritis or other problems.
Using drugs called sedatives to help you relax or sleep. These can be used during a test or procedure.
Medicine given to help you relax or sleep. This can be used during a test or procedure.
Infection inside a joint.
A problem caused by a treatment. For example, one side effect, or problem caused by anti-inflammatory medication is tummy upset.
Slit lamp exam
A type of test the eye doctor uses to check for eye inflammation
A professional trained to talk about, and provide services for your emotional and physical needs.
A dark-red fist shaped organ on the left side of your tummy which plays an important role in your immune system.
A device used to hold a joint in one position, in order to rest, support, or stretch it.
The use of a splint to keep a joint in one position in order to rest, support, or stretch it.
A family of chemicals that share a similar structure and serve lots of different purposes in your body. The body makes its own steroids. It is also available as a medication which is used to treat inflammation. These medications can come in many forms, including eyedrops, ointment or creams, syrup, pills or medication that can be injected or given intravenously. Although steroids are excellent anti-inflammatories, they also have many side effects.
Trouble moving your joints.
Your body’s physical and emotional reaction to something that upsets your personal balance.
Any event or demand on you that causes you stress.
The layers of fatty tissue just under the skin.
To do with the layers of fatty tissue just under the skin. For example, a subcutaneous injection is an injection into the layers of fatty tissue just under the skin.
A Disease-Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drug (DMARD) used to reduce inflammation in arthritis and other diseases.
Enlargement of an area of your body from a build-up of fluid.
Your experience of a sensation or change that could indicate a disease or physical problem.
Fluid that lubricates your joints to keep them moving smoothly.
The lining of a joint.
Inner lining of the sac surrounding a joint.
A tube-shaped device used to move fluid in or out of your body.
Affecting your entire body.
Stands for Systemic Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis. This sub-type of JIA, is associated with fever. Some of the other features that can occur include rash, swollen glands, an enlarged liver or spleen, and inflammation of the heart and lungs.
T cell/T cells
Small white blood cells responsible for the body’s immune response. They destroy foreign invaders and help other immune cells to make antibodies.
Stands for Tuberculosis. A serious disease that is spread through the air. It can cause coughing, chest pain, and fever.
TB skin test
A test to determine whether or not you have been exposed to tuberculosis. It is done by placing a small amount of harmless tuberculosis proteins just under the skin on your forearm using a needle. This test must be done before you start on any “biologic” arthritis medications.
Tough strands of tissue that connect muscles to bones.
A type of medicine called a “topical anaesthetic” that can be used to numb your skin for needle pokes and other procedures.
Topical anaesthetic/Topical anaesthetics
Medicines applied to your skin to numb it for needle pokes and other procedures.
Traditional Chinese medicine
A range of traditional medical practices that started in China over several thousand years ago. These practices include herbal medicine, acupuncture, massage and Qigong (a type of exerice).
A medicine called a “corticosteroid” that can be injected directly into a joint by your doctor. It often relieves inflammation in the joint very quickly.
Also called TB. A disease spread through the air that can cause coughing, chest pain, and fever.
A small sore or hole. Ulcers can occur in the lining of the stomach or intestine that can cause bleeding and/or pain.
A test that uses sound waves to create pictures of structures in your body. Ultrasound may be used during a joint injection to help your doctor verify that he is injecting the medication in the right place.
A test that analyzes the contents of urine (pee).
A test that analyzes the contents of urine (pee).
Inflammation inside your eye.
Killed or weakened organisms that are injected into your body to allow your immune system to develop immunity against the disease. Also called immunizations and inoculations.
Injecting killed or weakened microbes into your body to allow your immune system to develop immunity against the disease. Also called immunization and inoculation.
White blood cells
A type of blood cell that helps fight off infection. This type of blood cell also plays an important role in inflammation.
Imagining an unwelcome change or event.
A type of radiation passed through your body to get a picture of internal parts like bones and joints.