One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Originally (in full "polyarteritis acuta nodosa", "polyarteritis nodosa"): a systemic vasculitis characterized by focal inflammation and necrosis of the walls of medium-sized arteries, sometimes with aneurysm formation, often causing infarctions in organs supplied by affected vessels. Later also: any of several other forms of systemic vasculitis involving arteries or arterioles (and sometimes capillaries or venules); especially in "microscopic polyarteritis".
Early 20th century; earliest use found in Journal of Pathology and Bacteriology. From poly- + arteritis, after scientific Latin polyarteritis.
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