Recognizing pulmonary complications in patients with systemic sclerosis

Stephen A Chitty, Bennett P. DeBoisblanc

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Interstitial lung disease is the most common pulmonary complication in patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc). Typical symptoms are dry cough, fatigue, and progressive dyspnea on exertion. Chest radiographic and high-resolution CT findings include peripheral, basilar reticulonodular changes and honeycombing. Treatment is usually with cyclophosphamide; alternatives include azathioprine and corticosteroids. Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) also is common in SSc. Patients with mild PAH who demonstrate considerable vasoreactivity are potential candidates for treatment with oral calcium channel blockers. Select patients may be given slow-release oral nifedipine, 30 mg/d, with the dosage slowly increased as tolerated. Other therapies that can reduce symptoms and improve exercise tolerance and hemodynamics include bosentan and epoprostenol.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)470-476
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Respiratory Diseases
Volume25
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2004
Externally publishedYes

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Systemic Scleroderma
Pulmonary Hypertension
Lung
Exercise Tolerance
Interstitial Lung Diseases
Azathioprine
Calcium Channel Blockers
Epoprostenol
Nifedipine
Cough
Dyspnea
Cyclophosphamide
Fatigue
Adrenal Cortex Hormones
Thorax
Therapeutics
Hemodynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

Cite this

Recognizing pulmonary complications in patients with systemic sclerosis. / Chitty, Stephen A; DeBoisblanc, Bennett P.

In: Journal of Respiratory Diseases, Vol. 25, No. 11, 01.11.2004, p. 470-476.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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