Scleroderma is a form of arthritis in which the skin hardens.
In this diffuse disease of connective tissue, scar tissue is formed. The spread of this process can affect the musculoskeletal system, kidneys, digestive system, heart and lungs in addition to the skin. This disease can develop not only in adults, but also in children.
The female sex of scleroderma affects three times more often than men and boys.
The causes of scleroderma
Numerous reasons for the development of systemic scleroderma include:
Symptoms of plaque scleroderma
There are three stages of manifestation of scleroderma symptoms.
In the beginning pink-lilac rounded spots appear, then in the center of the spot there is a condensation, and at the end of the consolidation they are transformed into a hard plaque, which has a yellowish smooth surface.
Basically, there is limited and systemic scleroderma, and they are best studied.
Focal scleroderma is characterized by a gradual onset, separate plaques are formed here, while focal scleroderma becomes chronic at once.
Although there is no danger to life with this form of the disease, it is fraught with cosmetic defects.
Systemic scleroderma has an acute onset when the patient develops fever, pain and weakness in the muscles. The contributing factors in this case are stress, trauma, hypothermia. With this form of the disease, many tissues and organs are affected. The subtype of systemic scleroderma, diffuse scleroderma, is a rather rare form that is characterized by changes in internal organs. This can result in death.
With limited scleroderma affects the skin and close to the skin layers, and the rest of the body does not suffer. Plaque scleroderma, refers to the limited scleroderma, here there is some amount of spots, they appear on the damaged areas of the skin. Sometimes plaque scleroderma can pass by itself.
Plaque scleroderma in turn, how the pathological process can take place in several stages. At the initial stage, the skin stains. They can be of different sizes and shapes - both rounded, and oval and irregular.
Their color is pinkish or bluish, they are located on the skin of the chest, face, limbs and abdomen, slightly elevating above the healthy skin, from which they are separated by clear boundaries.
Then the appearance of the spots begins to change. The central part thickens and turns pale, the hair, sebaceous and sweat glands here die. Thus there is an itch and it is felt crawling of a murash. Then the focal place is even more densified, becoming pale as ivory, and outwardly resembling a plaque that gave the disease a name.
Then follows the process of scarring, with plaques softening, and atrophied skin is covered with fine wrinkles. Already later on this place begins to concentrate the excess of the pigment and a scar appears.
This is a rather long illness, which, not being life-threatening, brings a lot of inconveniences and unpleasant sensations.
How to treat scleroderma?
The treatment is usually symptomatic, since the causes of the disease have not yet been studied. Effective is the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory and hormonal drugs, including hydrocortisone and prednisolone. Hormones are applied topically in the form of ointments, or are injected with phonophoresis. Lidase and other drugs are also introduced to dissolve the outbreak. Various groups of vitamins and drugs are found that enhance metabolic processes, in particular solcoseryl and actovegin. Antibiotics are prescribed only in the case of secondary infection.