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Vasculitis is a condition that causes inflammation of vessel walls.3 ANCA-associated vasculitides are characterized by inflammation and lesions in the small blood vessels.7 ANCA-associated vasculitides include three conditions:4
Prompt recognition of vasculitis either as a new presentation or a clinical relapse is key to optimizing management and preventing organ damage.6
The good news is that prompt diagnosis and treatment with immunosuppressive therapy, such as cyclophosphamide, corticosteroids, and methotrexate, can help patients mitigate this organ damage.5
Laboratory diagnostics, when combined with clinical evaluation, can help you discover the ANCA-associated condition that is the cause of the symptoms. Test for PR3 and MPO ANCA in patients with:8
If your patients are exhibiting one or more common ANCA-associated vasculitis symptoms, testing can help provide a quicker diagnosis, while ruling out other possible diseases. Generally, a biopsy confirms a vasculitis diagnosis.7
Adding diagnostic testing to aid in a differential diagnosis has been shown to increase confidence in diagnosis to 90 percent.i,ii Conventionally, a diagnosis of allergic or autoimmune disease relies on the case history and a physical examination. However, adding diagnostic testing to aid in a differential diagnosis has been shown to increase confidence in diagnosis.i,ii Diagnostic testing can also help to improve the patient’s quality of life and productivity, reduce costs associated with absenteeism, and optimize use of medication, in addition to decreasing unscheduled healthcare visits.iii,iv
i. Duran-Tauleria E, Vignati G, Guedan MJ, et al. The utility of specific immunoglobulin E measurements in primary care. Allergy. 2004;59 (Suppl78):35-41.
ii. NiggemannB, Nilsson M, Friedrichs F. Paediatric allergy diagnosis in primary care is improved by in vitro allergen specific IgE testing. Pediatr Allergy Immunol. 2008;19:325-331
iii. Welsh N, et al. The Benefits of Specific Immunoglobulin E Testing in the Primary Care Setting. J Am Pharm Assoc. 2006;46:627.
iv. Szeinbach SL, Williams B, Muntendam P, et al. Identification of allergic disease among users of antihistamines. J Manag Care Pharm. 2004; 10 (3): 234-238
Advances in the medical treatment of vasculitis have resulted in patients living longer, but these patients frequently suffer substantial limitations in work and productivity—and face loss of personal income—due to their vasculitis.9
Minimizing the damage associated with vasculitis, particularly chronic pain and cognitive and functional impairment, may help mitigate future work limitations.9
Repeated assessment of vasculitis is necessary for planning therapy and modifying treatment. Therapy is based on the pattern of vasculitis and on careful evaluation of the disease extent and activity. Therapies typically include glucocorticoids and immunosuppressive agents, and there is increasing experience in the use of more specific biological therapies.10
As there are currently no clinical practice guidelines covering all aspects of the diagnosis and treatment of vasculitis in the United States—most physicians use the Chapel Hill nomenclature, which is based on clinical and histopathological features:11
The American College of Rheumatology Guideline for the Treatment and Management of Vasculitis has an anticipated final publication in late 2019/early 2020.