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Vasculitis is a general term for a group of about 20 disorders that involve inflammation in the blood vessels. Although these diseases are similar in some ways, they vary depending on the organs and blood vessels affected. When blood vessels become inflamed, they can become weakened, stretch and increase in size, causing an aneurysm. At other times, they may become inflamed and narrowed, partially or completely eliminating blood supply to tissues. If other blood vessels are not able to carry blood to that area, the tissue will die.

Our Approach to Vasculitis

UCSF provides comprehensive evaluations and advanced care for all forms of vasculitis. Because vasculitis can affect virtually any organ system in the body, our team includes many types of doctors, such as rheumatologists, dermatologists, nephrologists, neuromuscular specialists, ophthalmologists and pulmonologists.

Treatments vary depending on the type of vasculitis and organs affected, but the plan will usually include medications to suppress the immune system, which plays a key role in the disease.

In addition to caring for patients, our providers conduct clinical trials to evaluate potential new diagnostic tools and treatments for vasculitis. Interested patients may have the option to receive investigational treatments by participating in clinical trials.

Awards & recognition

  • usnews-neurology

    Among the top hospitals in the nation

  • usnews-rheumatology

    Best in California for rheumatology

UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.