LOIASIS
LUMBAR PUNCTURE
loiasis
A form of the tropical parasitic
disease
filariasis
,
which is caused by an
infestation by the worm
loa loa.
The
worms travel beneath the skin, produc-
ing itchy areas of inflammation known as
Calabar swellings, and can sometimes
be seen moving across the front of the
eye. Loiasis is treated with a course of
diethylcarbamazine.
loin
The part of the back on each side of
the spine between the lowest pair of ribs
and the top of the pelvis.
longsightedness
See
hypermetropia
.
loose bodies
Fragments of
bone
,
carti-
lage
,
or capsule linings within a
joint
.
Loose bodies may occur whenever there
is damage to a joint, as in injury,
osteo-
arthritis
,
or
osteochondritis dissecans
.
The
fragments can cause a joint to lock,
resulting in severe pain. Gentle manipu-
lation may be required to unlock the
joint. If locking occurs frequently, the
loose bodies may be removed during
arthroscopy
or by surgery.
loperamide
An
antidiarrhoeal drug.
Lop-
eramide occasionally produces a rash.
Other rare adverse effects are fever,
abdominal cramps, and bloating.
loratadine
An
antihistamine drug
.
lorazepam
A
benzodiazepine
drug used
in the treatment of
insomnia
and
anxiety
.
lordosis
Inward curvature of the
spine
.
This curvature is normally present to a
minor degree in the lower back, but lor-
dosis can become exaggerated by poor
posture or by
kyphosis
higher in the
back. Pronounced lordosis is usually
permanent and can lead to
disc pro-
lapse
or
osteoarthritis
of the spine.
losartan
An
angiotensin II antagonist
drug used to treat
hypertension
(high
blood pressure). Side effects are usually
mild; they include dizziness and fatigue.
lotion
A liquid drug preparation applied
to the skin. Some examples of drugs
prepared as a lotion include
calamine
and
betamethasone
, which are used to
treat skin inflammation.
Lou Gehrig's disease
The most com-
mon type of
motor neuron disease
; also
known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
low density lipoprotein
One of a group
of proteins that are combined with
lipids
in the
plasma
.
Low density lipoproteins
(LDLs) are involved in the transport of
cholesterol
in the bloodstream. An excess
of LDLs (see
hyperlipidaemias
) is asso-
ciated with
atherosclerosis
. (See also
high density lipoprotein
.)
LSD
Abbreviation of lysergic acid diethy-
lamide: a synthetic
hallucinogenic drug
,
derived from
ergot
, that is used illegally
as a recreational drug. LSD sometimes
produces panic and physical side effects
such as nausea and dizziness.
Ludwig's angina
A rare bacterial in-
fection of the floor of the mouth. The
condition spreads to the throat, causing
life-threatening swelling. It requires im-
mediate treatment with
antibiotic drugs
.
lumbago
A general term for low
back
pain
.
Lumbago may be due to an inter-
vertebral
disc prolapse
. It may also arise
if
synovium
is trapped between the sur-
faces of a small intervertebral joint, or if
there is momentary partial dislocation
of an intervertebral joint with straining of
ligaments. However, in many cases no
cause is found. Treatment is with
anal-
gesic drugs
and gentle physical activity.
(See also
lumbosacral spasm
.)
lumbar
Relating to the part of the back
between the lowest ribs and the top of
the pelvis. The lumbar region of the
spine
consists of the 5 lumbar
vertebrae
.
lumbar puncture
A procedure in which
a hollow needle is inserted into the lower
part of the spinal canal to withdraw
cerebrospinal fluid
or to inject drugs or
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