Beware Of CREST Syndrome If You Have Scleroderma

Do you have Scleroderma? It is an auto-immune disorder that causes fibrosis.

When you suffer from this particular auto-immune disorder, you can experience several associated symptoms and conditions, which are collectively known as CREST syndrome.

CREST syndrome, commonly know as limited Scleroderma, mainly affects the connective tissue of your body, which in turn causes various other health disorders.

It affects any tissue along the digestive tract and also causes serious lung and heart disorders. It is a major contributor of blood vessel and skin damage.

If you want to know how it will affect your entire body, here are a few serious complications associated with CREST syndrome. As there is no perfect cure to treat CREST syndrome, it would be better for you to be aware of its harmful effects and take necessary measures to avoid them.

Be aware of serious health disorders

Most visible signs of CREST syndrome like tight, thick skin on your fingers and face can change the appearance of your skin. It can even make your everyday tasks such as shaving or opening a jar difficult.

While these problems are manageable, the most serious complications associated with CREST syndrome are beneath your skin. Some of those serious health problems include:

  1. Lung damage: Excess collagen accumulated in lungs causes scarring of the tissue present between air sacs of your lung. This kind of scarring is commonly known as pulmonary fibrosis. When pulmonary fibrosis occurs, the transfer of oxygen from your lungs to blood stream is disturbed. As a result, it gradually causes high blood pressure in your lungs and potentially leads to a fatal condition.
  2. Gastrointestinal problems: CREST syndrome can affect any tissue along your digestive tract and causes damage to your esophagus. When the normal functioning of your esophagus is disturbed, it results in a difficulty in swallowing and chronic heart burn. This in turn leads to Barrett’s esophagus.
  3. Heart problems: As a result of excess collagen in heart, scarring to heart tissue will occur and it leads to abnormal heart rhythms (heart murmur). In very rare cases, it results in inflamed heart muscles.

However, other than these severe health disorders, you can also experience arthritis, arthralgia, various dental problems, depression and anxiety.

Try to identify the early signs of CREST syndrome, like numbness, pain or even color changes in your fingers as well as gradual thickening of skin. Seek proper medical attention before the disease progresses and avoid severe health problems associated with it.