How Does This Develop?
This would start when the antibodies would attack the heart tissues instead of protecting it. This would then cause the development of scar tissue on the walls of the heart or what is called fibrosis. The walls of the heart then would become thicker and with that, blood supply to the heart is cut short limiting the functions of the heart. This would then start of as high-blood pressure or other reasonably mild heart problems then can set off later as further complications.
While having the heart involved in scleroderma is quite rare, it is also one of the most difficult to handle when compared to other cases of scleroderma. But even if it is difficult to handle, treatment for it with the use of medications, therapies or surgery for some have relieved some patients before of the symptoms brought about by it. Treatment for cardiac involvement in scleroderma is possible.
Can This Be Treated?
As of now, there is no known cure for scleroderma. Treatment for all cases of scleroderma is more focused on limiting damage and treating symptoms brought about by it. If the heart gets involved with scleroderma, the patient can have some medications, therapies or surgery. Some medications that can be taken are immunosuppressive agents which limit the damaging effects of the body’s immune system.
Patients who have cardiac involvement in scleroderma should have their heart rates monitored often and kept at a healthy pace. While all of these would help, a patient would also need to change lifestyle. The change of lifestyle required is not too complicated as it is similar to most people who have heart problems.
While treating this could be a lot of work and I quite unclear, it is still very possible.