Churg-Strauss Syndrome

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Churg-Strauss syndrome facts

  • Churg-Strauss syndrome is a disease characterized by inflammation of the blood vessels.
  • Churg-Strauss syndrome occurs in patients with a history of asthma or allergy.
  • Symptoms of Churg-Strauss syndrome include fatigue, weight loss, nasal passage inflammation, numbness, and weakness.
  • The ultimate test for the diagnosis is a biopsy of involved tissue.
  • Treatment of Churg-Strauss syndrome involves stopping inflammation and suppressing the immune system.

What is Churg-Strauss syndrome?

Churg-Strauss syndrome is one of many forms of vasculitis. Vasculitis diseases are characterized by inflammation of blood vessels. Churg-Strauss syndrome, in particular, occurs in patients with a history of asthma or allergy and features inflammation of blood vessels (also referred to as angiitis) in the lungs, skin, nerves, and abdomen. The blood vessels involved in Churg-Strauss syndrome are small arteries and veins.

What causes Churg-Strauss syndrome?

Churg-Strauss syndrome is rare. The cause of the syndrome is not known, but it involves an abnormal over-activation of the immune system in a person with underlying bronchospastic lung disease (asthma). While Churg-Strauss syndrome has been reported to be associated with certain asthma medications, called leukotriene modifiers, whether they actually cause the disease or whether the patients that take them have more severe asthma that lends a tendency toward the development of Churg-Strauss is not yet clear.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/15/2014

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