Nomenclature and classification of vasculitis


Classification of vasculitis remains unsatisfactory. This is largely because the pathogenetic mechanisms of this family of related disorders have not been fully understood. Existing classification criteria are useful but limited. This has become more apparent with the advent of more effective and more specific therapies. A rational basis for classification could significantly improve our approach to treatment. The development of diagnostic criteria in vasculitis is an even greater challenge but may ultimately provide more useful for the non-specialist clinician. International efforts are underway to provide more effective classification and diagnostic criteria.

© 2011 The Authors;Clinical and Experimental Immunology © 2011 British Society for Immunology.
Update on the ACR/EULAR Diagnosis and Classification of Vasculitis Study (DCVAS)


Systemic vasculitis—is it time to reclassify?

The way forward in approaching a diagnosis of vasculitis

Vasculitides are a group of related disorders characterized by inflammation of blood vessels leading to tissue or end-organ injury. However, the classification of vasculitis has been controversial for many years. In 1990, the ACR proposed the criteria for classification of some vasculitides based on an analysis comparing the clinical features of patients with seven types of established vasculitis: GCA, Takayasu’s arteritis (TA), WG, ChurgStrauss syndrome (CSS), PAN, HScP and hypersensitivity vasculitis (HSV). The sensitivities of these criteria ranged from 71.0 to 95.3% and the specificities ranged from 78.7 to 99.7%.