Connective Tissue Disease
Connective Tissue Disease (CTDs) is any disease that targets the connective tissues within the body. There are 2 main types of CTDs:
- Inherited eg Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, Marfan’s syndrome, etc.
- Acquired eg Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, Scleroderma (systemic sclerosis), Sjögren’s, Myositis etc.
There are a number of acquired conditions including Undifferentiated Connective Tissue Disease (UCTD), Mixed Connective Tissue Disease (MCTD) and overlap syndromes
Acquired CTDs can affect many organs within the body, and can present in a variety of different ways. They are characterised by the presence of antinuclear antibodies in blood.
Sometimes, they can present very acutely, and these illnesses can result in significant morbidity and mortality.
The most frequent symptoms are constitutional (fatigue, fever, weight loss), occurring in 90-95%, followed by mucocutaneous (malar rash, alopecia, mucosal ulcers, discoid lesions), occurring in 80-90%
Face: butterfly rash, red patches
Lungs: pleuritis, pneumonitis, pulmonary embolism & haemorrhage
Heart: endocarditis, atherosclerosis, pericarditis
Blood: anaemia, hypertension
Systemic: hair loss, headaches, fever
Musculoskeletal: aches, arthritis, joint swelling
Abdomen: severe abdominal pain
Connective Tissue Disorder Clinics at UHCW
Rheumatology is a big provider for the acquired group of CTDs.
Consultants providing CTD clinics:
- Dr Siwalik Banerjee
- Dr Ganesh Kasavkar
- Dr Alec Price-Forbes
- Dr Tim Blake
- Dr Gillian Peffers.
- We also provide Nailfold Capillaroscopy.
- Rheumatology – Renal combined clinic (Dr Short)
- Rheumatology – ILD (chest) combined clinic (Dr D Desai)
Weekly multiprofessional rheumatology meeting, in which complex patients are discussed
Monthly multispecialty MDT (rheumatology, neurology, ENT and ophthalmology), in which complex CTD and vasculitis cases are presented