Abdominal Pain as Presentation of Takayasu's Arteritis in an Adolescent Male Patient

Farhad Zamani, MD; Ramin Shakeri, MD; Omid Modiramani, MD; Reza Malekzadeh, MD

Disclosures

March 16, 2006

Background

Takayasu's arteritis (TA) is a chronic vasculitis of unknown etiology. It mainly affects young women in the second and third decades of life.[1] It has a worldwide distribution, with the greatest prevalence in Asians.[2]

It primarily affects the aorta and its branches. Systemic symptoms, including fatigue, weight loss, and low-grade fever, are common in the early phase of disease. Vascular symptoms are rare at presentation, but with progression of disease, evidence of vascular involvement and insufficiency becomes clinically apparent due to dilation, narrowing, or occlusion of the proximal or distal branches of the aorta.

Subclavian artery involvement is common, and a stenotic lesion proximal to the origin of the vertebral artery can lead to neurologic symptoms.[3] Other symptoms include arthralgias; myalgia; skin lesions; symptoms related to pulmonary, carotid, vertebral, and coronary artery involvement; abdominal pain; and nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea that may result from mesenteric artery ischemia, which is rare in TA.[4,5,6]

We present a 16-year-old boy who first complained of recurrent abdominal pain and vomiting and was finally diagnosed with TA.

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