Henoch-Schönlein purpura (patient information)
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Henoch-Schönlein purpura On the Web
Henoch-Schonlein purpura is a disease that involves purple spots on the skin, joint pain, gastrointestinal problems, and glomerulonephritis (a type of kidney disorder).
What are the symptoms of Henoch-Schönlein purpura?
- Abdominal pain
- Bloody stools
- Joint pain
- Purple spots on the skin (purpura), usually over the buttocks, lower legs, and elbows
- Hives or angioedema
- Painful menstruation
What causes Henoch-Schönlein purpura?
- Henoch-Schonlein is caused by an abnormal response of the immune system. It is unclear why this occurs.
- The syndrome is usually seen in children, but it may affect people of any age. It is more common in boys than in girls. Many people with Henoch-Schonlein purpura had an upper respiratory illness in the weeks before.
Who is at highest risk?
- The doctor will examine your body and look at your skin. The physical exam will reveal skin sores (lesions) and joint tenderness.
- Tests may include:
- Skin biopsy
When to seek urgent medical care?
Call for an appointment with your health care provider if:
- You develop symptoms of Henoch-Schonlein purpura, particularly if they last for more than a few days
- You have low urine output after an episode of Henoch-Schonlein purpura
There is no specific treatment. Most cases go away on their own without treatment. If symptoms persist, your doctor may recommend therapy with corticosteroids such as prednisone.
Where to find medical care for Henoch-Schönlein purpura?
What to expect (Outlook/Prognosis)?
The disease usually gets better on its own without treatment.
- Bleeding inside the body
- Kidney problems (in rare cases)