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 ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2009  |  Volume : 75  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 356--362

Cutaneous vasculitides: Clinico-pathological correlation


1 Departments of Dermatology, Venereology, Leprology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India
2 Department of Histopathology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India
3 Department of Immunopathology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Sanjeev Handa
Departments of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0378-6323.53130

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Background: Cutaneous vasculitis presents as a mosaic of clinical and histological findings. Its pathogenic mechanisms and clinical manifestations are varied. Aims: To study the epidemiological spectrum of cutaneous vasculitides as seen in a dermatologic clinic and to determine the clinico-pathological correlation. Methods: A cohort study was conducted on 50 consecutive patients clinically diagnosed as cutaneous vasculitis in the dermatology outdoor; irrespective of age, sex and duration of the disease. Based on the clinical presentation, vasculitis was classified according to modified Gilliam's classification. All patients were subjected to a baseline workup consisting of complete hemogram, serum-creatinine levels, serum-urea, liver function tests, chest X-ray, urine (routine and microscopic) examination besides antistreptolysin O titer, Mantoux test, cryoglobulin levels, antineutrophilic cytoplasmic antibodies and hepatitis B and C. Histopathological examination was done in all patients while immunofluorescence was done in 23 patients. Results: Out of a total of 50 patients diagnosed clinically as cutaneous vasculitis, 41 were classified as leukocytoclastic vasculitis, 2 as Heinoch−Schonlein purpura, 2 as urticarial vasculitis and one each as nodular vasculitis, polyarteritis nodosa and pityriasis lichenoid et varioliforme acuta. Approximately 50% of the patients had a significant drug history, 10% were attributed to infection and 10% had positive collagen workup without any overt manifestations, while 2% each had Wegener granulomatosis and cryoglobulinemia. No cause was found in 26% cases. Histopathology showed features of vasculitis in 42 patients. Only 23 patients could undergo direct immunofluorescence (DIF), out of which 17 (73.9%) were positive for vasculitis. Conclusions: Leukocytoclastic vasculitis was the commonest type of vaculitis presenting to the dermatology outpatient department. The workup of patients with cutaneous vasculitis includes detailed history, clinical examination and investigations to rule out multisystem involvement followed by skin biopsy and DIF at appropriate stage of evolution of lesions. Follow up of these patients is very essential as cutaneous manifestations may be the forme fruste of serious systemic involvement.






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