Vasculitis

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Vasculitis is a term for a group of rare diseases that have in common inflammation of blood vessels. Dr. Edward Hill discusses vasculitis in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Vasculitis is an inflammation of the blood vessels. It happens when the bodys immune system attacks the blood vessel by mistake. It can happen because of an infection, a medicine or another disease.

There are many types of vasculitis. Most types of vasculitis are rare, and the causes are generally not known. Vasculitis can affect both men and women at any age.

Vasculitis can affect arteries, veins and capillaries. When a blood vessel becomes inflamed, it can

Narrow, making it more difficult for blood to get through

Close off completely so that blood cant get through, or

Stretch and weaken so much that it bulges. The bulge is called an aneurysm. If it bursts, it can cause dangerous bleeding inside the body.

Symptoms of vasculitis can vary, but usually include fever, swelling and a general sense of feeling ill.

The main goal of treatment is to stop the inflammation. Steroids and other medicines to stop inflammation are often helpful.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.