Are giant cells seen on temporal artery biopsy (TAB) clinically significant in giant cell arteritis (GCA) (temporal arteritis)?

Updated: Sep 03, 2020
  • Author: Mythili Seetharaman, MD; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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Answer

The clinical significance of giant cells seen on TAB in temporal arteritis is unknown. Armstrong et al found that patients whose TAB contained giant cells had 3 times the rate of blindness and polymyalgia rheumatica compared with the group with no giant cells; although the difference was not statistically significant, it does suggest an association with giant cells and more aggressive disease. [129]


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