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Giornale Italiano di Dermatologia e Venereologia 2001 February;136(1):39-43

Copyright © 2001 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: Italian

Laboratory evaluation of urticarial vasculitis

Bongiorno M. R., Aricò M.

Università degli Studi - Palermo Istituto di Clinica Dermosifilopatica


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Urticarial vasculitis (UV) is a clinicopathologic entity characterized by cutaneous lesions clinically resembling urticaria and persisting longer than conventional urticaria. Usually it resolves leaving an ecthymotic mark and vasculitis with necrosis of the small dermal vessel, deposition of fibrinoid material, dermal cellular infiltrates of neutrophils with nuclear debris and extravasated erythrocytes. Many patients suffer from systemic symptoms including arthritis, renal involvement, obstructive lung disease, gastrointestinal symptoms, uveitis and episcleritis. UV is most commonly an acquired idiopathic phenomenon but can occur in association with other disorders. Two major groups of UV have been classified: the normocomplementemic, with a less severe clinical course, and the hypocomplementemic UV. Hypocomplementemic urticarial vasculitis is a distinct clinical entity in a subset of patients with urticarial vasculitis. In this paper, the laboratory findings of UV are reviewed: skin biopsy, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, white cell count , urinalysis, serum protein electrophoresis, hepatitis antigens and antibodies, cryoglobulins, CH50, C3, C4, C1q, C1q antibody, antinuclear antibody, ANCA, antiphospholipid antibodies, circulating immune complexes.

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