05-31-2004, 06:44 PM
hi my name is theresa and i was diagnosed with collagen vascular disease.its part of the lupus family..does anyone know anythging about it..thankls theresa
06-06-2004, 01:43 PM
Hello Manyhahas and welcome to our forum! Here is what I was able to find out about Collagen Vascular Disease! I hope that you find us helpful and supportive! Again, welcome
Collagen is a tough, glue-like protein that represents 30% of body protein and shapes the structure of tendons, bones, and connective tissues. Malfunctioning of the immune system can affect these structures. This is known as collagen vascular disease.
Collagen vascular diseases include:
* Rheumatoid arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic (long-term) inflammatory disease that primarily affects the joints and surrounding tissues, but can also affect other organ systems.
Cause And Risk
The cause of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is unknown. However, RA involves an attack on the body by its own immune cells (auto-immune disease). Different cases may have different causes. Infectious, genetic, and hormonal factors may play a role.
The disease can occur at any age, but it begins most often between the ages of 25 and 55. The disease is more common in older people. Women are affected 2.5 times more often than men. Approximately 1-2% of the total population is affected. The course and the severity of the illness can vary considerably.
* Systemic lupus erythematosus
A chronic, inflammatory autoimmune disorder that may affect many organ systems including the skin, joints and internal organs.
Cause And Risk
Normally the immune system controls the body's defenses against infection. In systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and other autoimmune diseases, these defenses are turned against the body and rogue immune cells attack tissues. Antibodies may be produced that can react against the body's blood cells, organs, and tissues. These lead immune cells to attack the affected systems, producing chronic disease.
The mechanism or cause of autoimmune diseases is not fully known, but many researchers suspect it occurs following infection with an organism that looks similar to particular proteins in the body, which are later mistaken for the organism and wrongly targeted for attack.
Scleroderma is a diffuse connective tissue disease characterized by changes in the skin, blood vessels, skeletal muscles, and internal organs.
The cause of scleroderma is unknown. The disease may produce local or systemic symptoms. The course and severity of the disease varies widely in those affected.
Excess collagen deposits in the skin and other organs produce the symptoms. Damage to small blood vessels within the skin and affected organs also occurs. In the skin, ulceration, calcification, and changes in pigmentation may occur.
Systemic features may include fibrosis and degeneration of the heart, lungs, kidneys and gastrointestinal tract.
The disease usually affects people 30 to 50 years old. Women are affected more often than men. Risk factors are occupational exposure to silica dust and polyvinyl chloride.
* blanching, blueness, or redness of fingers and toes in response to heat and cold (Raynaud's phenomenon)
* pain, stiffness, and swelling of fingers and joints
* skin thickening and shiny hands and forearm
* skin is hard
* tight and mask-like facial skin
* ulcerations on fingertips or toes
* esophageal reflux or heartburn
* difficulty swallowing
* bloating after meals
* weight loss
* shortness of breath
Additional symptoms that may be associated with this disease:
* wrist pain
* skin, abnormally dark or light
* joint pain
* hair loss
* eye burning, itching and discharge
Dermatomyositis is connective-tissue disease that is characterized by inflammation of the muscles and the skin.
Cause And Risk
The cause of this disorder is unknown. It is theorized that an autoimmune reaction or a viral infection of the skeletal muscle may cause the disease. It can affect people at any age, but most commonly occurs in people 40 to 60 years old, or in children from 5 to 15 years old.
It affects women much more often than men. Muscle weakness may appear suddenly or occur slowly over weeks or months. There may be difficulty with raising the arms over the head, rising from a sitting position, and climbing stairs.
A dusky, purplish red rash may appear over the face, neck, shoulders, upper chest, and back. Joint pain, inflammation of the heart, and lung (pulmonary) disease may occur.
A malignancy may sometimes be associated with this disorder. A similar condition is called polymyositis when the symptoms occur without any skin manifestations.
* Muscles weak, stiff or sore
* Butterfly rash
* Upper eyelids purple/violet colored
* Muscle weakness
* Red, dusky skin rash
* Difficulty swallowing
* Shortness of breath
* Skin redness or inflammation
Polyarteritis nodosa is a serious blood vessel disease in which small and medium-sized arteries become swollen and damaged when they are attacked by rogue immune cells.
Cause And Risk
Polyarteritis nodosa is a disease of unknown cause that affects arteries, the blood vessels which carry oxygenated blood to organs and tissues. It occurs when certain immune cells attack the affected arteries.
The condition affects adults more frequently than children. It damages the tissues supplied by the affected arteries because they don't receive enough oxygen and nourishment without a proper blood supply.
In this disease, symptoms result from damage to affected organs, often the skin, heart, kidneys, and nervous system.
Generalized symptoms include fever, fatigue, weakness, loss of appetite, and weight loss. Muscle aches (myalgia) and joint aches(arthralgia) are common. The skin may show rashes, swelling, ulcers, and lumps (nodular lesions).
Nerve involvement may cause sensory changes with numbness, pain, burning, and weakness. Central nervous system involvement may cause strokes or seizures. Kidney involvement can produce varying degrees of renal failure.
Involvement of the arteries of the heart may cause a heart attack (acute myocardial infarction), heart failure, and inflammation of the sack around the heart (pericarditis).
* abdominal pain
* decreased appetite (anorexia)
* weight loss, unintentional
* muscle aches (myalgia)
* joint aches (arthralgia)
I hope that I have been able to answer your questions :P Please let me know if you need anything else!
Peace and Blessings