Early diagnosis of systemic sclerosis (SSc) is imperative, and Raynaud phenomenon (RP) is an important component of progressive vasculopathy. Nailfold videocapillaroscopy (NVC) is a well-established tool that can quantify structural vascular abnormalities. Digital thermal monitoring (DTM) assesses microvascular functional dysfunction related to thermoregulation. In this study, we investigated the correlation of NVC patterns and DTM variables in patients with SSc.

Methods. Patients with SSc according to the 2013 American College of Rheumatology/European League Against Rheumatism criteria who consented and enrolled in the clinical care registry had NVC and DTM performed. For NVC, the number of capillaries (density), measurement of apical diameter (dimension), presence or absence of hemorrhages, and number of abnormal shapes were assessed to categorize 3 different qualitative patterns: early, active, and late. For DTM, Doppler ultrasound hyperemic, low frequency, blood velocity of radial artery, and fingertip vascular function were assessed, and a vascular reactivity index (VRI) measurement was automated. Statistical evaluation was performed by nonparametric tests to assess the correlation of NVC and VRI.

Results. Thirty-one SSc subjects with interpretable NVC and DTM performed on the same day were included in the study.

Reference link- https://www.jrheum.org/content/48/2/247