Polyarteritis nodosa (PAN) is a blood vessel disease. Medium sized arteries become inflamed. Sometimes, smaller arteries are involved. This leads to problems with the organs.
The cause of PAN is unknown. The immune system attacks healthy arteries. This causes inflammation. It’s not known what causes the immune system to be overactive.
PAN is more common in people aged 40 to 60 years of old, but it can happen at any age. It is also more common in men.
Your chances of PAN are higher if with:
PAN affects the whole body at the same time. Common problems include:
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and health history. Your answers may point to PAN. There is no specific test that detects PAN. You may have:
Early diagnosis and care may improve the outcome. Care may be aggressive. The goal is to reduce inflammation of the arteries to bring on a remission. Without care, the condition can lead to death.
There is no way to prevent PAN since the cause is unknown.
The Polyarteritis Nodosa Research and Support Network
CORD—Canadian Organization for Rare Disorders
Canadian Rheumatology Association
Polyarteritis nodosa. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T909129/Vent...ular-arrhythmias. Updated April 7, 2017. Accessed July 10, 2018.
Types of vasculitis: polyarteritis nodosa. The Johns Hopkins Vasculitis Center website. Available at: https://www.hopkinsvasculitis.org/types-vasculitis/polyarteritis-nodosa. Accessed July 10, 2018.
Last reviewed June 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Michael J. Fucci, DO, FACC
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.