Glossary

  • antagonist—a drug that neutralizes the effect of another drug
  • arthralgia—a painful joint
  • antigen—a substance that stimulates the formation of an antibody
  • anaphylaxis—a state of shock, or an extreme allergic reaction
  • basophil—a type of a white blood cell involved in mast cell degranulation
  • cutaneous—relating to the skin
  • degranulation—discharge of the contents of a cell
  • dermatographism, or dermographism—condition in which the skin becomes red and raised when the skin is scratched lightly or irritated
  • eosinophils—red staining white cells that usually increase in allergic reactions
  • Epipen®—an injected rescue med for anaphylaxis containing epinephrine
  • erythema—a patch of redness of the skin
  • flush—to blush; to become red
  • heparin—a blood thinner, released into the body by degranulation
  • histamine—a mediator released by mast cells
  • H1—a class of antihistamines that reduce respiratory histamine
  • H2—a class of antihistamines that reduce gastrointestinal histamine
  • lesion—a change in tissue structure caused by injury or disease
  • leukotriene—a type of white blood cell involved in mast cell degranulation
  • mast cell—a type of white blood cell which release histamine, heparin etc. when it degranulates.
  • NSAID—Non-steroid anti-inflammatory drug
  • PGD2, or Prostaglandin 2—a by-product of mast cell degranulation that can cause joint pain and hormone problems
  • prostaglandin—fatty acid that affects many body functions
  • pruritus—itching
  • purpura—a purplish or brownish-reddish discoloration of the skin’s outer layer caused by blood vessel fragility
  • systemic—affecting the entire body
  • tachycardia—rapid heart rate
  • urticaria—hives, nettle rash
  • urtication—a burning or itching sensation
  • vasculitis—an inflammation of the blood vessels
  • wheal; wheal/flare response—a wheal is a swelling, and flare is redness. Hives are manifested by the combination of wheal, flare, and itching.
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