What qualifies as a severe case of vasculitis?

Severity can have many definitions. From an individual patient’s perspective, severity can be viewed impact the vasculitis has on their overall functioning or the functioning of an individual organ system. From the perspective of your treating physician or a researcher involved in vasculitis, severe disease usually is taken to mean…...

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What is the difference between disease activity and disease damage?

Disease activity represents the aspects of your disease that are caused by active inflammation in organs targeted by the vasculitis and response to treatment with steroids and immunosuppressive drugs. Disease damage represents the parts of your disease that do not respond to anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive therapy.  In any particular patient,…...

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What types of laboratory tests should I get?

This question is difficult to address in general terms because there are a lot of individual factors that influence the need for specific laboratory tests. In principle, serial laboratory testing over time has two major goals. First, laboratory testing should screen for disease activity. Second, laboratory testing should look for…...

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What is the life expectancy of patients with vasculitis?

There is no simple answer. Specific data are not available and it is hard to answer as there are many different types of vasculitis, some of which are mild and others which are more severe. Some forms of vasculitis can affect vital organs and be life-threatening when the disease is…...

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Should I seek a second opinion?

This is a complicated question and raises issues about trust and confidence in one’s physician. Because of the complexities in diagnosing and treating vasculitis, patients with vasculitis should receive care directed by a physician with expertise in vasculitis. Seeking a second opinion might be considered if there is a problem…...

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