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Vasculitis Causes

The cause of the condition is usually unknown. It sometimes occurs as an allergic reaction, for example, to medication. Vasculitis is also not a hereditary disease and it does not run in families. Hepatitis viruses and some bacteria causing infections may cause some types of Vasculitis.

Vasculitis Definition

A group of diseases featuring inflammation of the wall of blood vessels including veins (phlebitis), arteries, and capillaries due to leukocyte migration and resultant damage, Vasculitis is a condition where the immune system mistakenly attacks the body's own blood vessels. Vasculitides generally affect several organ systems and can cause severe disability.

Vasculitis Diagnosis

Examining a sample from an affected part of the body under the microscope is often required to confirm the diagnosis. Also particularly helpful are kidney biopsies if there are signs of kidney involvement. Angiograms and other special x-rays can sometimes diagnose vasculitis affecting large blood vessels.

Vasculitis Symptoms and Signs

Vasculitis patients are usually found with systemic symptoms with single or multiorgan dysfunction. Common but nonspecific complaints include fatigue, weakness, fever, arthralgias, abdominal pain, hypertension, renal insufficiency, and neurologic dysfunction. The following symptoms should also raise a strong suspicion of vasculitis: mononeuritis multiplex, palpable purpura, and pulmonary-renal syndrome.

Vasculitis Treatment

Treatment of Vasculitis is targeted to the underlying cause. Most vasculitis in general are however treated with steroids such as methylprednisolone since the underlying cause of vasculitis is due to hyperactive immunological damage. Cyclophosphamide and azathioprine are among the immunosuppresants given to some patients.

Drugs used for treatment of Vasculitis


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