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Glossary of Terms

ACE (angiotensin converting enzyme) inhibitors
A class of medications commonly prescribed for the treatment of high blood pressure. In patients with scleroderma, ACE inhibitors are used to improve kidney function and prevent progression of kidney problems. Examples of ACE inhibitors include captopril (Capoten), enalapril (Vasotec), lisinopril (Zestril, Prinivil), ramipril (Altace).
Autoimmune disease
Refers to a group of more than 80 serious illnesses. In autoimmune diseases such as scleroderma, immune cells that normally act to defend the body against infection work incorrectly to attack the very cells and organs they are meant to protect.
Calcium channel blockers
A class of medications used to increase the supply of oxygen-rich blood to the heart and lower blood pressure. By improving blood circulation, these medications can help prevent Raynaud's attacks. Examples of calcium channel blockers include amlodipine (Norvasc), nifedipine (Procardia, Adalat), diltiazem (Cardizem), verapamil (Isoptin, Calan).
Proton-pump inhibitors
Proton-pump inhibitors work by blocking the enzyme in the wall of the stomach that produces acid. Examples of proton-pump inhibitors include omeprazole (Prilosec), lansoprazole (Prevacid), and esomeprazole (Nexium).
Randomly assigned
Randomly assigned means that neither you nor your doctor will be able to choose your study-group assignment. Instead, your assignment will be done by chance, similar to a flip of a coin.