Which histologic findings are characteristic of calciphylaxis?

Updated: Feb 24, 2020
  • Author: Julia R Nunley, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Answer

Biopsy specimens typically demonstrate calcification within the media and intima of small- and medium-sized arterioles with extensive intimal hyperplasia and fibrosis, but this also may be seen in uninvolved skin in patients with chronic kidney disease or atherosclerosis. [42] A mixed inflammatory infiltrate frequently occurs. Subcutaneous calcium deposits with panniculitis and fat necrosis may sometimes be found. Vascular microthrombi are frequently evident. See the image below.

Calcification of capillaries within the subcutaneo Calcification of capillaries within the subcutaneous fat, characteristic of calciphylaxis. Image courtesy of Dirk Elston, MD.

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