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Pediatr Radiol. 2015 Jul;45(8):1110-25. doi: 10.1007/s00247-015-3339-3. Epub 2015 Jul 22.

Imaging of systemic vasculitis in childhood.

Author information

1
Department of Medical Imaging, The Hospital for Sick Children, 555 University Ave., Toronto, ON, M5G1X8, Canada.

Abstract

The term "systemic vasculitis" encompasses a diverse set of diseases linked by the presence of blood-vessel inflammation that are often associated with critical complications. These diseases are uncommon in childhood and are frequently subjected to a delayed diagnosis. Although the diagnosis and treatment may be similar for adult and childhood systemic vasculitides, the prevalence and classification vary according to the age group under investigation. For example, Kawasaki disease affects children while it is rarely encountered in adults. In 2006, the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) and the Pediatric Rheumatology European Society (PReS) proposed a classification system for childhood vasculitis adopting the system devised in the Chapel Hill Consensus Conference in 1993, which categorizes vasculitides according to the predominant size of the involved blood vessels into small, medium and large vessel diseases. Currently, medical imaging has a pivotal role in the diagnosis of vasculitis given recent developments in the imaging of blood vessels. For example, early diagnosis of coronary artery aneurysms, a serious complication of Kawasaki disease, is now possible by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the heart and multidetector computed tomography (MDCT); positron emission tomography/CT (PET/CT) helps to assess active vascular inflammation in Takayasu arteritis. Our review offers a unique approach using the integration of the proposed classification criteria for common systemic childhood vasculitides with their most frequent imaging findings, along with differential diagnoses and an algorithm for diagnosis based on common findings. It should help radiologists and clinicians reach an early diagnosis, therefore facilitating the ultimate goal of proper management of affected children.

PMID:
26198677
DOI:
10.1007/s00247-015-3339-3
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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