What are the signs and symptoms of GPA and MPA?
The signs and symptoms of GPA and MPA vary widely.. The list below lists the most common signs and symptoms. Keep in mind that these are just some of the symptoms of GPA and MPA. There may be others that you are experiencing that are not included in this list. That's why it's important that you talk to your doctor about any symptoms you may be experiencing.
Common symptoms include:
Granulomatosis With Polyanglitis (GPA)
Sinus and nose congestion, nosebleeds, fever, cough (with or without blood), loss of appetite, weight loss, lack of energu, nasal membrane ulceratosis and crusting, hearing loss, eye inflammation, numbness or tingling in limbs, weakness, blood in usine (may or may not change uringe color), joint pain.
Microscopic Polyanglitis (MPA)
Shortness of breath, cough (with or without blood), blood in urine (may or may not change urine color), weight loss, rash and/or skin sores, numbness or tingling in limbs, weakness, fever.
Other symptoms can include joint pain, decreased hearing, skin rashes, eye redness and/or vision changes, fatigue, fever, appetite and weight loss night sweats, numbness or loss of movement in the fingers, toes or limbs.
In GPA and MPA, there are periods of flares and periods of remission. Flares occur when symptoms worsen or new symptoms appear. Remission, on the other hand, is a long or short period of time after a flare when symptoms are controlled or go away.
Since GPA and MPA are chronic diseases, they never completely go away. So even when a patient is in remission, the treating doctor may continue to prescribe medications to control the symptoms.
How are GPA and MPA diagnosed?
Diagnosis of GPA and MPA is based on signs and symptoms, medical history, a physical exam, and test results. Unfortunately, there is no one simple test that can diagnose GPA and MPA.
Diagnosis may require a combination of tests, including:
• Blood tests: Blood tests can show if you have abnormal levels of certain blood cells and antibodies in your blood. A blood test will be performed to check for ANCAs
• Biopsy: During a biopsy, your doctor will take a tissue sample from a blood vessel or an affected organ. A pathologist, a doctor who specializes in studying cells and tissues under a microscope, will look at the sample for signs of inflammation or tissue damage
• Urine test: You will provide a urine sample for evaluation. This test looks for any abnormal levels of protein or blood cells in the urine, which can be signs that your kidneys are affected
• Chest X-ray: This is a test that creates pictures of the structures inside your chest, such as your heart, lungs, and blood vessels. An abnormal chest X-ray may show any changes that may be affecting your lungs
• Computed tomography scans: A computed tomography scan (usually called a CT scan) is a type of X-ray that creates more detailed pictures of your internal organs than a standard X-ray. It can show changes that have developed in your sinuses, chest, or abdominal organs
1. American College of Rheumatology:
2. Calabrese LH, Molloy ES, Duna Gf. Antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody-associated vasculitis. In Kelley’s Textbook of Rheumatology, 2009; Edited by GS Firestein, RC Budd, SE Gabriel, et al. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders/Elsevier.
3. Pagnoux C. Updates in ANCA-associated vasculitis. Eur J Rheumatol 2016; 3:122-133.
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