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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Stiff skin syndrome


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Treatment

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How might stiff skin syndrome be treated?

Currently no targeted therapies have proven effective for treating stiff skin syndrome. Current management aims to address joint issues. Regular physiotherapy and physical exercise may be recommended to improve/maintain joint movement. A number of treatments have been tried in individual cases, including steroids, immuno-suppressant drugs, psoralens (light-sensitizing medications) and light therapy, and penicillamine. None of these treatments have been helpful in slowing or stopping symptoms.[1]

Recent study findings have shed light on the underlying cause of stiff skin syndrome, and offer hope that effective treatments are on the horizon. Specifically, the study found that blocking certain antibodies (integrin binding and TGF-beta antibodies) prevented new skin lesions and reversed existing ones.[2] You can read more about this discovery through the following link to the Scleroderma Research Society:
http://www.srfcure.org/research/funded-research/3301-interrogation

We are not aware of clinical trials investigating new treatments at this time, however you can check ClinicalTrials.gov periodically for updates. The U.S. National Institutes of Health, through the National Library of Medicine, developed ClinicalTrials.gov to provide patients, family members, and members of the public with current information on clinical research studies. Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study.
Last updated: 11/4/2014

References
  1. Amorim AG et al. Stiff skin syndrome--case report. An Bras Dermatol. 2011 Jul-Aug; 86(4 Suppl 1):S178-81. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22068804. Accessed 11/4/2014.
  2. Gerber EE et al.,. Integrin-modulating therapy prevents fibrosis and autoimmunity in mouse models of scleroderma. Nature. 2013 Nov 7; 503(7474):126-30. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24107997. Accessed 11/4/2014.


See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.