Scleroderma renal crisis and renal involvement in systemic sclerosis.Nat Rev Nephrol. 2016 11; 12(11):678-691.NR
Scleroderma renal crisis (SRC) is a rare, potentially life-threatening complication that affects 2-15% of patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc, also known as scleroderma). SRC typically presents in patients with early, rapidly progressive, diffuse cutaneous SSc within the first 3-5 years after the onset of a non-Raynaud sign or symptom. SRC is characterized by an acute, usually symptomatic increase in blood pressure, a rise in serum creatinine levels, oliguria and thrombotic microangiopathy in about 50% of patients. The prognosis of SRC substantially improved in the 1980s with the introduction of angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors for rapid blood pressure control, with additional antihypertensive agents as required. However, the survival of patients with SRC can still be improved. Current patient survival is 70-82% at 1 year, but decreases to 50-60% at 5 years despite dialysis support. Patients with SRC who show no signs of renal functional recovery despite timely blood pressure control are candidates for transplantation. In this Review, we discuss progress made in the identification and proactive management of patients at risk of SRC and make recommendations aimed at optimizing management for those who progress to chronic kidney failure.