CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Scleroderma. Light micrograph of a vascular lesion (centre) caused by scleroderma. This is an autoimmune disorder where the body's immune system attacks its own cells. Scleroderma, also known as systemic sclerosis, results in the persistent hardening of the body's connective tissues, for example the skin. It can affect blood vessels by causing them to harden and thicken forming vascular lesions, as seen here. In its most extreme state it can affect the vascular supply to the major organs of the body, eventually causing death.
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