Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis

What is Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis?

Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis or Hypersensitivity Vasculitis is a histopathologic in nature and not considered as a disease; it’s an inflammation of the small blood vessels that are present in the body.


This Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis usually affects the skin and if you look at the skin it’s like a purple discoloration that doesn’t disappear when you apply pressure to it because on the bleeding on the blood vessels.

Signs and Symptoms

  1. Skin lesions are present that is usually seen at the buttocks area, legs, and trunk of the person
  2. Skin lesions that are present in the skin is easily felt because of the formation of small papules
  3. There is also blisters on the affected skin
  4. The person might also feel itchiness and pain in the affected area
  5. The person will also experience muscle pain and joint pain
  6. Due to the disease, the person will experience fever, fatigue and, loss of appetite

Causes

This disease has no specific cause why it happened or how it began. Medical professionals think that there are (1) problem in the person’s immune response, in which the body of the individual treats its own blood vessels as somewhat as a trespasser and the immune response of the person attacks them or so called antibodies that attacks the trespasser.

It also is somewhat kind of (2) allergic reaction caused by an over the counter drugs like antibiotics and it’s also caused by a (3) disease like hepatitis and HIV or Human Immunodeficiency Virus that affects the immune system of the person that can cause the disease to be triggered.

This type of disease can cause an obstruction in blood flow in which if the person doesn’t immediately go to a medical professional to treat it, it can lead to a serious condition that the tissue that is affected became necrotic or lead to tissue death.

The Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis can also attack internally affecting organs such as kidney, heart, lungs as well as a part of gastrointestinal tract.

Diagnosis

  1. History of the patient
  2. Blood test that will reveal presence of infection that are present in the body.
  3. Angiography is a type of x-ray procedure that the person to be examined will be injected by a dye for better visualization of the organs including the blood vessels to check if there are any present form of inflammation that might cause in having Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis.
  4. Skin biopsy is a minor operation where the medical professional will cut a small portion of the infected part to determine what cause it. It will help the medical professional to identify the disease that causes the inflammation.

Histopathology of Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis

Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis is a condition where there is a skin involvement that occurs as an only entity or it’s a part of a sign that involves organs internally. Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis is characterized by the involvement of the small blood vessels in the body that will cause in swelling and invasion of the vessels leading to extravasations and necrosis of the walls of the blood vessels.

This disease affects the supply of nutrients in the body that will lead to many problems. This disease must be check by the medical professionals to determine the underlying causes of this disease to prevent serious problems that will lead to tissue death.

These are some of the conditions that can be associated in having Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis: acute hemorrhagic edema, viruses like hepatitis b and c, bacteria that is caused by staphylococcus and streptococcus infections, diseases like leukemia and myeloma, formation of tumors in the lungs and colon, connective tissue disease like rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus, and drugs like antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs and anti-thyroid drugs.

Treatment

The main goal of the treatment is :

To prevent or minimize permanent damage due to the ischemia that affects the blood vessels.

The other way to treat this disease:

  1. Removal and identify the drugs that might cause as an allergic reaction to the body.
  2. Identify some environmental factors that cause the allergic reaction of the patient.

Drug therapy

  • Medical professionals give Corticosteriods to the patient that is a steroid hormone that is known for their ability to decrease the inflammation in the vessels and they have the ability to decrease immune response activity.
  • Inflammation is a natural occurring process where the body is fighting for the invaders such as when the person has an infection. Inflammation normally shows when there are problem in the immune response of the person in which it will work against the body tissues and cause damage.

Restrictive diet

  • It is applied by the medical professionals to patients where the patient already experience necrosis and the cause of having this is not yet identifiable.

Prognosis of Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis

The prognosis of this disease is unpredictable and related to specific form. This disease is normally a benign disorder that usually affects only the skin. The prognosis is good if the person who has this disease seeks immediate medical attention and treats immediately the disease.

For some who has this disease which are caused by other diseases, the prognosis will depend on the treatment on the disease.

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