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Low Utility of Radiological Imaging in Evaluating Cutaneous Small-Vessel Vasculitis: A Multi-institutional Retrospective Study


J Am Acad Dermatol. 2020 Oct 1;S0190-9622(20)32644-X. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2020.09.051.Online ahead of print.

Andrew C Walls 1Ryan S Din 1Jean-Phillip Okhovat 2Peter B Chansky 3Robert G Micheletti 3Arash Mostaghimi 1

Author Information

1 Harvard Medical School/Brigham and Women's Hospital Department of Dermatology.

2 Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Dermatology.

3 Department of Dermatology Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania.


Small vessel vasculitis (SVV) is a heterogenous disease which may be skin-limited, or manifestation of systemic disease. Radiological studies are often recommended in textbooks, although no data exist to define its utility. This article demonstrates low utility of radiology for identifying systemic manifestation of vasculitis with potentials for false positives and negatives. Evidence to support routine imaging for evaluation of small vessel vasculitis is insufficient and should be considered for each patient on an individual basis.