Henoch-Schonlein purpura (HSP) is a disease involving inflammation of small blood vessels. It most commonly occurs in children. The inflammation causes blood vessels in the skin, intestines, kidneys, and joints to start leaking.The main symptom is a rash with numerous small bruises, which have a raised appearance, over the legs or buttocks.
Henoch-Schonlein purpura is a small vessel vacuities in which complexes of immunoglobulin A (IgA) and complement component 3 (C3) are deposited on arterioles, capillaries, and venules. As with IgA nephropathy, serum levels of IgA are high in HSP and there are identical findings on renal biopsy; however, IgA nephropathy has a predilection for young adults while HSP is more predominant among children.A diagnosis of Henoch-Schonlein purpura is fairly easy to make if the classic rash, joint pain and gastrointestinal symptoms are present. If some of these signs and symptoms are missing, the following tests have to be done lab testes , biopsies, and imaging tests.
Henoch-Schonlein purpura usually improves on its own within a month with no lasting ill effects. Bed rest, plenty of fluids and over-the-counter pain relievers may help.In Henoch-Schonlein purpura, some of the body's small blood vessels become inflamed, which can cause bleeding in the skin, joints, abdomen and kidneys. Why this initial inflammation develops isn't clear, although it may be the result of an overzealous immune system responding inappropriately to certain triggers.
From 1987 to 1996, we retrospectively analyzed 84 children and 38 adults admitted to Chang Gung Memorial Hospital with the diagnosis of Henoch-Schönlein purpura (HSP). All of the adult patients had skin biopsy finding showing leukocytoclastic vasculitis. Male predominance was noted in children, but not in adults. Preceding infection was noted in 40.5% of children and 31.6% of the adults (P = 0.46). 8.3% of children and 13.2% of adults had medication intake at disease onset (P = 0.62). Children had more frequent abdominal pain than the adults (70.2% vs 28.9%, P < 0.01). Renal involvement was more common and severe in adults, manifested as more frequent hypertension (P < 0.05) and heavy proteinuria (P < 0.01).