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Therapeutic Plasma Exchange (TPE) – Additional Questions and Answers

Recently, we have been getting an increasing number of inquiries about the use of Therapeutic Plasma Exchange (TPE) as a potential treatment for systemic sclerosis (SSc).  If any of you are unsure what we are talking about, start by watching this video:  It is targeted at clinicians but is pretty easy to understand. A number of new questions have come up recently, so we thought this post might be useful in answering them. Who [...]

December 10th, 2018|Categories: Educational Articles|0 Comments

SMILE! Amazon will donate to the Scleroderma Education Project!

Several years ago, Amazon set up a program to help registered (501c3) non-profit organizations.  The program is called Amazon Smile.  After you select a non-profit organization, for every dollar you spend on Amazon, Amazon matches this with a 0.5 cent donation to your designated non-profit organization.  It is as simple as that.  It costs you nothing, but those 0.5% donations can really add up over time. Here is how to set up and use Amazon [...]

October 29th, 2018|Categories: News & Announcements, Popular|Tags: |0 Comments

Questions Remain about New Shingles Vaccine in Patients with Autoimmune Diseases

Shingrix is a new shingles vaccine that is known to be much more effective than the previous generation shingles vaccine (Zostavax).  However, a new article in the newsletter MedPage Today notes that the efficacy and safety of Shingrix has not been established among patients with autoimmune diseases.  While Shingrix was studied in patients with cancer and HIV, it was not tested in patients with autoimmune diseases because of concerns that one component of the vaccine [...]

August 28th, 2018|Categories: News & Announcements|0 Comments

High Magnification Nailfold Capillary Examination for the Diagnosis of Systemic Scleroderma

Diagnosis of systemic scleroderma can often be very challenging.  Diagnosis is done by a combination of lab tests (ANA/antibodies) and clinical symptoms such as skin thickening, puffy hands, telangiectasias. Additional symptoms such as GI symptoms (e.g., GERD or difficulty swallowing) and tendon friction rubs are factored into the diagnosis equation as well.  One of the most important diagnostic tools is nailfold capillary examination under medium to high magnification.  As it turns out, since systemic scleroderma is [...]