what is vasculitis and how is it caused?

Not Medical Advice: Vasculitis is the inflammation of blood vessels. The changes caused in the blood vessel walls as a result of vasculitis can include scarring, narrowing, thickening, and weakening of the blood vessel walls. It can be acute and short-term, or it can be chronic. Severe cases of vasculitis can results in tissue or organ damage, and possibly death.

The cause of vasculitis is unknown in many of its forms. Vasculitis with unknown cause is known as primary vasculitis.

Secondary vasculitis occurs due to another disease. The vasculitis occurs in response to an infection; due to an allergic reaction to a medication; due to cancer of the blood cells such as lymphoma or leukemia; or as a result of an immune system disease (such as lupus, sclerodema, or rheumatoid arthritis).

Some forms of vasculitis are more common in certain groups than in others, though anyone can be affected by vasculitis. Common signs and symptoms may include fatigue, fever, loss of appetite, joint & muscle pain, numbness/weakness in nerve areas, or weight loss. We encourage you to seek medical care if you suspect you or someone you know has persistent or severe symptoms.

According to global business reports published on September 12th, 2012, lupus medication Benlysta has been undergoing testing for its potential ability in treating vasculitis. The testing was done by US company Human Genome Sciences, which was acquired by UK pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline in July 2012.

Check out the video below for more information about vasculitis:

Updated on Thursday, September 20 2012 at 04:45PM EDT
Collections: vasculitisinflammationthickeningacutechronic