Scleroderma Awareness Month is celebrated every June to increase public knowledge about this little-known autoimmune disorder and to promote research for a cure.
Hoag Executive Health is proud to be able to provide the highest quality of care to our patients living with complicated, and often misunderstood conditions.
What is Scleroderma?
Scleroderma is a chronic autoimmune disorder that causes the skin to harden and tighten. In fact, this skin thickening, swelling and tightening is what led to the name of the condition itself. “Sclera” means hard and “derma” means skin. It can also affect the digestive system, blood vessels, and organs.
This condition can be mild or life-threatening, and the intervention and treatment options vary based on type and severity.
Types of Scleroderma
There are two main types of scleroderma: localized and systemic. Localized scleroderma only affects the skin, while systemic scleroderma can affect the entire body.
Scleroderma can also be classified as limited or diffuse. Limited scleroderma mainly affects the fingers, hands, and face, while diffuse scleroderma affects a larger area of the body including the trunk, arms, and legs.
While the exact cause of scleroderma is unknown, it is thought to be triggered by a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
Scleroderma can be classified as limited or diffuse. Limited scleroderma mainly affects the fingers, hands, and face, while diffuse scleroderma affects a larger area of the body including the trunk, arms, and legs.
There is no single test that can confirm the presence of the disease. Instead, diagnosis is based on a combination of medical history, physical examination, laboratory testing, and imaging studies.
The most important tests for diagnosing scleroderma are blood tests that measure levels of antibodies associated with the disease, echocardiography – to assess heart function – and pulmonary function testing to assess lung function.
The comprehensive, one-day physicals offered by Hoag Executive Health include all of the above!
Blood & Immunity
- Blood Composition
- Omega 3-6-9 Distribution
- CBC Complete Blood Count
Heart & Circulation
- Advanced Lipid Panel
- Inflammation Markers Blood
- Pressure Biometrics Carotid
- Artery Assessment
Lungs & Breathing
- Pulmonary Function
- Maximum Oxygen Consumption (VO2 Max)
- Exercise Heart Rate Ranges
- Pulse Oximetry
Treatment for Scleroderma
There is no cure for scleroderma, but treatments are available to improve symptoms and prevent complications. Treatment plans vary depending on the type and severity of scleroderma, but may include medication, therapy, and surgery.
Scleroderma can be a debilitating disease, but with proper diagnosis and treatment, like that offered at Hoag Executive Health, many people with scleroderma are able to lead full lives.
HEH offers premiere preventative care exams that include a variety of testing that can help to catch diseases like Scleroderma early. Call us today at 949-999-9300.