Scleroderma is an autoimmune disease that primarily affects the connective tissue, this of which is found all over our body in our skin, joints and in most of our organs. It happens when the antibodies in your immune system would damage your tissues, which is contrary to their main purpose of which is to protect them. That in turn would cause the scarring of the affected areas that would also make them thicken. Blood supply to the affected area is limited and that causes the function to also be limited.
Scleroderma can happen to anyone, but it is more likely to appear in some than it is on others. Scleroderma is four times more likely to happen to women than it is on men and it usually develops between the ages of 30 and 50. It is also found often in African-American women and of the Native American Choctaw tribe. It rarely occurs among northern Asians and children.
What Are The Types Of Scleroderma?
Scleroderma can be classified according the area that it is affecting as well as the degree. Mainly, there are two forms of scleroderma. The localized type is known as limited scleroderma. This type would usually only affect a small portion, usually on the skin and even if it could disable a patient, it is not fatal most of the time. While this is considerably mild, it could develop rapidly and could start affecting the organs, if that happens, the condition in known as systemic sclerosis.
Systemic sclerosis is the severe form of the disease and would tend to be more fatal than the localized type. This is because it limits blood flow to the organs, causing different types of problems. The affected organs can be anywhere from the digestive system, the kidney, the lungs and the heart. Conditions with organs however can be managed with the use of careful medication.