Diagnostic approach and current treatment options in childhood vasculitis

Barut K. , Sahin S. , Adrovic A., Kasapcopur O.

TURK PEDIATRI ARSIVI-TURKISH ARCHIVES OF PEDIATRICS, vol.50, no.4, pp.194-205, 2015 (Journal Indexed in ESCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Review
  • Volume: 50 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2015
  • Doi Number: 10.5152/turkpediatriars.2015.2363
  • Page Numbers: pp.194-205


All inflammatory changes in the vessel wall are defined as vasculitis. Pediatric vasculitis may present with different clinical findings. Although Henoch-Schonlein purpura which is the most common pediatric vasculitis generally recovers spontaneously, it should be monitorized closely because of the risk of renal failure. Although Kawasaki disease is easy to diagnose with its classical findings, the diagnosis may be delayed in case of incomplete Kawasaki disease. Kawasaki disease should be considered especially in infants in case of prolonged fever even if the criteria are not fully met and intravenous immunoglobulin treatment should be administered without delay in order to prevent development of coronary artery aneurism. Reaction at the site of administration of Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine may be observed as commonly as cervical lymphadenopathy in Kawasaki disease and may be used as a valuable finding in suspicious cases. Although anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic antibody-associated vasculitides are rare in children, renal involvement is more common and progression is more severe compared to adults. Hence, efficient and aggressive treatment is required. Takayasu's arteritis is observed commonly in young adult women and rarely in adolescent girls. Therefore, a careful physical examination and blood pressure measurement should be performed in addition to a detailed history in daily practice. In children with unexplained neurological findings, cerebral vasculitis should be considered in the absence of other systemic vasculitides and necessary radiological investigations should be performed in this regard. This review will provide an insight into the understanding of pediatric vasculitis, current diagnostic approaches and prognosis by the aid of new studies.