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Polymyalgia rheumatica and temporal arteritis 

Polymyalgia rheumatica and temporal arteritis
Chapter:
Polymyalgia rheumatica and temporal arteritis
Author(s):

Jan Tore Gran

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199204854.003.191104_update_001

Update:

Temporal arteritis—enhanced description of ‘masked’ or ‘occult’ disease.

Pathogenesis and treatment—role of IL-6 discussed, and use of the anti-IL-6 monoclonal antibody tocilizumab.

Updated on 30 Nov 2011. The previous version of this content can be found here.
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date: 18 October 2017

Polymyalgia rheumatica and temporal arteritis are distinct but overlapping inflammatory conditions of unknown aetiology. They almost exclusively affect people over 50 years of age, women more than men (ratio 2–3:1), and particularly those of Nordic heritage.

Temporal arteritis is characterized by granulomatous inflammation that penetrates all layers of the wall of medium and (often) large muscular arteries, in particular the superficial temporal artery. Histological examination of tissues from patients with polymyalgia rheumatica shows nonspecific changes only. The term ‘giant cell arteritis’ is properly used only to describe patients with biopsy-proven arteritis....

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