Scleroderma

Common Name(s)

Scleroderma

Scleroderma is actually a group of rare conditions that harden and tighten the skin and connective tissue. Connective tissues provide support to many parts of the body including skin, bones, blood vessels, tendons, ligaments, and other organs. In some individuals scleroderma only affects the skin, but it can also harm blood vessels, lungs, kidneys, and the digestive tract. Symptoms associated with scleroderma vary but may include hardened thickened skin especially on hands or face that appears smooth and shiny, upset digestive system (acid reflux, difficulty swallowing, diarrhea, or constipation), shortness of breath, cold fingers and toes (Raynaud’s disease), ulcers on fingertips, dry eyes or mouth (Sjogren’s syndrome), swelling of hands, small red spots on face and chest (telangiectasia), painful swollen joints and muscle weakness.

Scleroderma is caused by an overproduction and accumulation of a protein that makes up the connective tissues called collagen. Doctors do not know what causes large amounts of collagen to be made and built up in body tissue. Scleroderma is more common in women than in men and typically onsets between the ages of 30 and 50. Scleroderma is not contagious, infectious, or cancerous.

Scleroderma takes many forms and affects many different areas of the body, making it difficult to diagnose. A doctor may perform a physical exam along with blood tests, breathing tests, a CT scan, and an echocardiogram of your heart to diagnose scleroderma. While there is no cure for scleroderma, treatments can lessen symptoms and help prevent further complication. Therapies can also be used to help lessen pain and improve mobility. If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with scleroderma, talk to your doctor about the most current treatment options. Support groups are also a good source of information and community support.

Source: Advocacy organizations associated with the condition.

 

Advocacy and Support Organizations

 

Condition Specific Organizations

Following organizations serve the condition "Scleroderma" for support, advocacy or research.

Association of Gastrointestinal Motility Disorders, Inc. (AGMD)

AGMD is a nonprofit international organization which serves as an integral educational resource concerning digestive motility diseases and disorders. It also functions as an important information base for members of the medical and scientific communities. In addition, it provides a forum for patients suffering from digestive motility diseases and disorders as well as their families and members of the medical community.

Last Updated: 28 Feb 2015

View Details
HealthyWomen

HealthyWomen (HW) is the nation's leading independent health information source for women. Our core mission is to educate, inform and empower women to make smart health choices for themselves and their families. For more than 20 years, millions of women have been coming to HW for answers to their most pressing and personal health care questions. Through our wide array of online and print publications, HW provides health information that is original, objective, reviewed by medical experts and reflective of the advances in evidence-based health research.

Last Updated: 16 Mar 2015

View Details
International Scleroderma Network

Our mission is to provide stellar worldwide research, support, education and awareness for scleroderma and related illnesses.

Last Updated: 18 Apr 2010

View Details
Logo
Raynaud's & Scleroderma Ireland

• To improve the lives of patients, their families and carers by providing support, advice and information. • To increase the awareness of Raynaud’s and Scleroderma amongst healthcare professionals, Government and Statutory agencies and the general public. • To work in partnership with appropriate healthcare professionals and agencies to promote and co-ordinate the attainment of the objectives of the strategy. • Maintain a working environment that fosters communication, teamwork and diversity among all members of staff- permanent, temporary and voluntary

Last Updated: 6 May 2014

View Details
Logo
Scleroderma Foundation

Our three-fold mission is to help patients and their families cope with scleroderma through mutual support programs, peer counseling, physician referrals, and educational information, to promote public awareness and education through patient and health professional seminars, literature, and publicity campaigns, and to stimulate and support research to improve treatment and ultimately find the cause of and cure for scleroderma and related diseases.

Last Updated: 19 Oct 2012

View Details

 

General Support Organizations

Not finding the support you need? Show General Support Organizations

 
 
Top

How do you compare to others with this condition?

Privately answer questions about your health. Let resources, you select, come to you.

Anonymously share and see how your answers compare with others with this condition while privately providing key pieces of information to medical researchers, disease advocacy groups, and others ONLY YOU select to help speed up cures and better alternatives.

 
 

Advocacy and Support Organizations

 

Condition Specific Organizations

Following organizations serve the condition "Scleroderma" for support, advocacy or research.

Association of Gastrointestinal Motility Disorders, Inc. (AGMD)

AGMD is a nonprofit international organization which serves as an integral educational resource concerning digestive motility diseases and disorders. It also functions as an important information base for members of the medical and scientific communities. In addition, it provides a forum for patients suffering from digestive motility diseases and disorders as well as their families and members of the medical community.

http://www.agmd-gimotility.org

Last Updated: 28 Feb 2015

View Details
HealthyWomen

HealthyWomen (HW) is the nation's leading independent health information source for women. Our core mission is to educate, inform and empower women to make smart health choices for themselves and their families. For more than 20 years, millions of women have been coming to HW for answers to their most pressing and personal health care questions. Through our wide array of online and print publications, HW provides health information that is original, objective, reviewed by medical experts and reflective of the advances in evidence-based health research.

http://www.healthywomen.org

Last Updated: 16 Mar 2015

View Details
International Scleroderma Network

Our mission is to provide stellar worldwide research, support, education and awareness for scleroderma and related illnesses.

http://www.sclero.org/

Last Updated: 18 Apr 2010

View Details
Logo
Raynaud's & Scleroderma Ireland

• To improve the lives of patients, their families and carers by providing support, advice and information. • To increase the awareness of Raynaud’s and Scleroderma amongst healthcare professionals, Government and Statutory agencies and the general public. • To work in partnership with appropriate healthcare professionals and agencies to promote and co-ordinate the attainment of the objectives of the strategy. • Maintain a working environment that fosters communication, teamwork and diversity among all members of staff- permanent, temporary and voluntary

http://www.irishraynauds.com

Last Updated: 6 May 2014

View Details
Logo
Scleroderma Foundation

Our three-fold mission is to help patients and their families cope with scleroderma through mutual support programs, peer counseling, physician referrals, and educational information, to promote public awareness and education through patient and health professional seminars, literature, and publicity campaigns, and to stimulate and support research to improve treatment and ultimately find the cause of and cure for scleroderma and related diseases.

http://www.scleroderma.org

Last Updated: 19 Oct 2012

View Details

 

General Support Organizations

Not finding the support you need? Show General Support Organizations

 
 
 
 
Top

Scientific Literature

Articles from the PubMed Database

Research articles describe the outcome of a single study. They are the published results of original research.
The terms "Scleroderma" returned 768 free, full-text research articles on human participants. First 3 results:

Oxidative stress-dependent activation of collagen synthesis is induced in human pulmonary smooth muscle cells by sera from patients with scleroderma-associated pulmonary hypertension.
 

Author(s): Francesco Boin, Gian Luca Erre, Anna Maria Posadino, Annalisa Cossu, Roberta Giordo, Gaia Spinetti, Giuseppe Passiu, Costanza Emanueli, Gianfranco Pintus

Journal:

 

Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a major complication of systemic sclerosis. Although oxidative stress, intima hyperplasia and a progressive vessel occlusion appear to be clearly involved, the fine molecular mechanisms underpinning the onset and progression of systemic sclerosis-associated ...

Last Updated: 8 Aug 2014

Go To URL
Proinflammatory effects of diesel exhaust nanoparticles on scleroderma skin cells.
 

Author(s): A Mastrofrancesco, M Alfè, E Rosato, V Gargiulo, C Beatrice, G Di Blasio, B Zhang, D S Su, M Picardo, S Fiorito

Journal: J Immunol Res. 2014 ;2014():138751.

 

Autoimmune diseases are complex disorders of unknown etiology thought to result from interactions between genetic and environmental factors. We aimed to verify whether environmental pollution from diesel engine exhaust nanoparticulate (DEP) of actually operating vehicles could play ...

Last Updated: 1 Jul 2014

Go To URL
Oesophageal stenosis dilatation through retrograde trans-gastrostomal approach in a patient with systemic scleroderma.
 

Author(s): D Serban, C Brănescu, M Comandaşu, A M Dascălu, D Dumitrescu, H Bumbea, B Braticievici, C Savlovschi

Journal: Chirurgia (Bucur). ;109(3):396-401.

 

The paper presents the surgical solving of an oesophageal stenosis, using a device of pneumatic dilatation with trans-gastrostomal approach, in a patient with multiple disabling handicaps, secondary severe malnutrition and previously diagnosed with scleroderma.

Last Updated: 24 Jun 2014

Go To URL

Reviews from the PubMed Database

Review articles summarize what is currently known about a disease. They discuss research previously published by others.
The terms "Scleroderma" returned 80 free, full-text review articles on human participants. First 3 results:

Scleroderma renal crisis in a case of mixed connective tissue disease.
 

Author(s): Mukul Vij, Vinita Agrawal, Manoj Jain

Journal: Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl. 2014 Jul;25(4):844-8.

 

Mixed connective tissue disease (MCTD) is an overlap syndrome first defined in 1972 by Sharp et al. In this original study, the portrait emerged of a connective tissue disorder sharing features of systemic lupus erythematosus, systemic sclerosis (scleroderma) and polymyositis. Scleroderma ...

Last Updated: 27 Jun 2014

Go To URL
Screening patients with scleroderma for pulmonary arterial hypertension and implications for other at-risk populations.
 

Author(s): Johannes P Schwaiger, Dinesh Khanna, J Gerry Coghlan

Journal: Eur Respir Rev. 2013 Dec;22(130):515-25.

 

Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a progressive vasculopathy that is advanced by the time symptoms develop. As symptoms are nonspecific and the condition uncommon, continued progression toward end-stage disease occurs for an average of 2 years between symptom onset and diagnosis. ...

Last Updated: 2 Dec 2013

Go To URL
Scleroderma-related lung disease: are adipokines involved pathogenically?
 

Author(s): Shannon Haley, Dilip Shah, Freddy Romero, Ross Summer

Journal: Curr Rheumatol Rep. 2013 Dec;15(12):381.

 

Scleroderma is a systemic autoimmune disease of unknown etiology whose characteristic features include endothelial cell dysfunction, fibroblast proliferation, and immune dysregulation. Although almost any organ can be pathologically involved in scleroderma, lung complications including ...

Last Updated: 31 Oct 2013

Go To URL
 
 
Top

Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

There are currently no related results available in GeneReviews.

There are currently no related results available in Genetic Testing Registry.

 
 
Top

Clinical Trial Information This information is provided by ClinicalTrials.gov

Multi-center, Web Based Observational Study of Pulmonary Hypertension in Scleroderma Patients
 

Status: Recruiting

Condition Summary: Systemic Sclerosis; Scleroderma; Pulmonary Hypertension; Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension

 

Last Updated: 9 Mar 2015

Go to URL
Scleroderma Registry & Repository at the Hospital for Special Surgery
 

Status: Recruiting

Condition Summary: Scleroderma

 

Last Updated: 26 Mar 2015

Go to URL
Zibotentan Better Renal Scleroderma Outcome Study
 

Status: Recruiting

Condition Summary: Scleroderma; Scleroderma Renal Crisis; Chronic Kidney Disease

 

Last Updated: 19 Nov 2014

Go to URL