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Scleroderma (Systemic Sclerosis)

Scleroderma (Systemic Sclerosis) - How to prevent?

Scleroderma (Systemic Sclerosis) - Treatments

​Treatments can slow down or stop the disease from getting worse. Treatments help to relieve the different symptoms of the condition and limit the damage to the internal organs. Dedicated Scleroderma clinics have been shown to result in better care for patients. There is currently no cure for Scleroderma. Research is therefore necessary to continue to discover new treatments and improve the care of patients with Scleroderma.

Regular moderate exercise is important to improve joint flexibility and cardiovascular health. Consult your doctor or physiotherapist about the type of exercise you can do.

Pain relief for stiff and swollen joints is usually possible with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or low dose steroids. Areas of dry and irritated skin can be helped by regular moisturizing.  Antihistamines may help with intense itch.

For Raynaud's phenomenon, it is important to keep warm and to stop smoking. Medications to improve blood circulation may be prescribed to help ulcer healing or to prevent recurrent ulcers. Proper wound care is important to promote ulcer healing and antibiotics may be needed if the ulcers are infected.

For oesophageal involvement, H2 blockers, proton pump inhibitors or prokinetics may be prescribed. Simple measures such as avoiding acidic foods, eating small frequent meals, elevating the head of the bed and avoiding lying down for at least 3 hours after a meal can help to decrease symptoms of acid reflux.

Immunosuppressive medication may be prescribed to decrease the activity of the immune system. When internal organs are affected by the condition, other specific treatments will be needed.

Scleroderma (Systemic Sclerosis) - Post-surgery care

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