What is the role of radiography in the workup of Henoch-Schönlein purpura (IgA vasculitis)?

Updated: Jan 08, 2021
  • Author: Rajendra Bhimma, MBChB, MD, PhD, DCH (SA), FCP(Paeds)(SA), MMed(Natal); Chief Editor: Craig B Langman, MD  more...
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If hemoptysis has been noted, a chest radiograph should be obtained. Chest radiography may help in determining the presence and extent of pulmonary hemorrhage.

Plain radiography of the abdomen may help in diagnosing intestinal obstruction. Contrast-enhanced radiography of the small intestine may demonstrate thickened mucosal folds or small barium flecks. Radiologic GI findings mainly include bowel ischemia with thumbprinting and bowel-wall edema, which is sometimes visible on abdominal radiographs.

A barium enema study may be warranted for evaluating epigastric pain, hematemesis, and melena and for confirming and treating intussusception. If barium studies are performed, typical findings of ischemic colitis may be found, including a narrow colon with thickened mucosa and thumbprinting.

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