Scleroderma

By: Brooke Palmer

Information on Scleroderma

Signs

• Thick, hard, or tight skin

• Difficulty moving fingers

• Dry mouth

Symptoms

• Pain in muscles and joints


Pathogenesis

It is a disease that affects connective tissue in the body. The cause is unknown. It can’t be caught from other people, and doctors don’t think it is passed through genes from parent to child.


Diagnosis

Doctor’s diagnose by:

• Medical history

• Physical exam

• Lab tests

• Skin biopsy


Management

Has no cure, but symptoms and damage can be reduced. Can be reduced by taking prescribed medicines, follow doctor’s advice, and quickly report problems.


Prognosis

Can range from very mild to life threatening depending on what major organ is affected.


Epidemiology

More common in women than men, but anyone can get it, even children. Localized type (affects skin tissue) shows up before the age of 40, and more common in people with European descent than African American. Systematic type (affect skin, tissues under it, blood vessels, and major organs) more common in people aged 30 to 50. More common in African Americans than European descent.



http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Scleroderma/scleroderma_ff.asp

http://umm.edu/health/medical/reports/articles/scleroderma