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Alternative Names Return to topVasculitis - necrotizing
Definition Return to top
Necrotizing vasculitis is a rare condition that involves inflammation of the blood vessel walls.
Causes Return to top
Necrotizing vasculitis is common with:
It is very rare in children.
The cause of the inflammation is unknown. It is likely related to autoimmune factors. The wall of the blood vessel may scar and thicken, or die (become necrotic). The blood vessel may close, interrupting blood flow to the tissues it supplies. The lack of blood flow will cause the tissues to die.
Necrotizing vasculitis may affect any blood vessel in the body. Therefore, it can cause problems with the skin or any of the body's organs.
Symptoms Return to top
Fever, chills, fatigue, or weight loss may be the only symptoms at first. However, symptoms may be in almost any part of the body.
Muscles and joints:
Brain and nervous system:
Other symptoms include:
Exams and Tests Return to top
The doctor will perform a physical exam. A nervous system (neurological) examination may show signs of nerve damage.
Tests that may be done include:
Treatment Return to top
Corticosteroids (given in low doses) or other drugs that suppress the immune system may reduce inflammation of the blood vessels.
Outlook (Prognosis) Return to top
The outcome depends on the location of the vasculitis and the severity of tissue damage.
Possible Complications Return to top
When to Contact a Medical Professional Return to top
Call your health care provider if you have symptoms of necrotizing vasculitis.
Emergency symptoms include:
Prevention Return to top
There is no known way to prevent this disorder.
References Return to top
Cassidy JT. Systemic lupus erythematosus, juvenile dermatomyositis, scleroderma, and vasculitis. In: Firestein GS, Budd RC, Harris Jr. ED, McInnes IB, Ruddy S,eds. Kelley's Textbook of Rheumatology. 8th. Philadelphia, Pa: W. B. Saunders Company; 2008: chap 98.Update Date: 5/31/2009 Updated by: Mark James Borigini, Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.