Scleroderma is a hardening of the skin or connective tissues. There are several types of scleroderma, which happens in different parts of the body. The disease causes the production of too much collagen, a protein, which then accumulates in tissues. It may also affect organs and blood vessels.
Commonly, skin becomes hard or tight, which can limit movement. Muscle and joint pain may occur. Fingers or toes can be sensitive to cold, feel numb or painful. Digestive tract problems include acid reflux and difficulty absorbing nutrients. Less common symptoms include heart, lung and kidney problems.
Physicians at Penn Rheumatology provide expert evaluation, diagnosis and treatment for scleroderma.
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A clinical trial is a research study involving patient volunteers that are conducted to find safe and effective treatments for a variety of health conditions.