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Semin Nephrol. 2014 Nov;34(6):641-7. doi: 10.1016/j.semnephrol.2014.09.007.

Calcific uremic arteriolopathy: a call for action.

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Department of Cardiology and Center for Rare Diseases (Zentrum für seltene Erkrankungen Aachen, ZSEA), RWTH University Hospital, Aachen, Germany. Electronic address:
Department of Health Sciences, Renal Division, San Paolo Hospital, University of Milan, Milan, Italy.
Department of Cardiovascular, Respiratory, Nephrologic and Geriatric Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy.


Calciphylaxis (calcific uremic arteriolopathy [CUA]) is a threatening disease that increasingly is acknowledged as a challenging condition at the interface of nephrology, dermatology, and cardiology. The primary CUA diagnosis is determined most often in nephrology care units because the vast majority of affected cases are detected in patients with advanced or end-stage renal disease. The typical clinical cascade starts with severe pain in initially often inconspicuous skin areas, which might progress to deep tissue ulcerations. Ulcer development is a severe complication with particularly high morbidity and mortality. Unfortunately, there has been a certain stagnancy regarding the slow progress in our understanding of how and why CUA develops. In addition, several important open issues regarding therapy have not been addressed successfully yet. Therefore, the European Renal Association - European Dialysis and Transplant Association (ERA-EDTA) scientific working group Chronic Kidney Disease-Mineral and Bone Disorders (CKD-MBD) has accepted the challenge and has initiated a call for action by defining calciphylaxis as one of the outstanding research targets for the upcoming years.


Calciphylaxis; calcific uremic arteriolopathy; calcification; chronic kidney disease; vascular disease

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