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Cutaneous vasculitis is characterized by a group of diseases in which inflammation of blood vessels occurs, specifically the small and medium-sized vessels of the skin and subcutaneous tissue, which can lead to a reduction or blockage of blood circulation inside these vessels or their wall may become thinner, causing them to dilate.
The inflammation and consequent dilation of these vessels can lead to the appearance of symptoms such as purplish spots on the skin, petechiae, loss of sensitivity in the region and ulcers, which should be treated as soon as possible.
Treatment depends on the underlying cause of the cutaneous vasculitis, which may consist of rest, elevation of the limb and use of compression stockings and, in some cases, administration of antihistamines, corticosteroids and/or immunosuppressants.
What are the symptoms
Some of the most common symptoms of cutaneous vasculitis occur more frequently in the legs, with the appearance of purplish spots on the skin, hives, tingling, loss of sensation in the region, ulcers and petechiae. Find out what petechiae are and the main causes.
If the skin manifestations are secondary to systemic vasculitis, other symptoms may also occur, such as fever, malaise, body pain, tiredness, weight loss and joint pain.
Learn more about vasculitis and see how it manifests in different regions of the body.
Some of the main causes that can lead to the appearance of cutaneous vasculitis are infection by bacteria or viruses, injuries caused by the action of the individual's own immune system (autoimmune diseases) and as a side effect of the use of certain medications, such as beta-lactam antibiotics, diuretics, sulfonamides and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, for example.
What the diagnosis consists of
The diagnosis is usually made by an angiologist or rheumatologist, and consists of observing the symptoms presented, taking into account the person's he alth history. In some cases, it may be necessary to carry out laboratory tests on blood and urine, and a biopsy, in order to determine the cause of the vasculitis, in order to guide a specific treatment. Understand what it is and how a biopsy is performed.
How the treatment is done
Treatment depends on the cause of the vasculitis, and can be done with the administration of antihistamines and/or corticosteroids. In more severe cases, it may be necessary to use immunosuppressants, which act by reducing the action of the immune system against the body itself.
Furthermore, rest with limb elevation and the use of compression stockings may, in some cases, be sufficient to treat cutaneous vasculitis and contribute to an improvement in symptoms.