A new international classification of childhood vasculitis
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- Dillon, M.J. & Ozen, S. Pediatr Nephrol (2006) 21: 1219. doi:10.1007/s00467-006-0181-8
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There has been, for many years, a need for an acceptable classification of childhood vasculitis as well as criteria for classifying specific sub-categories of vasculitic disease affecting the young. Hitherto, there has been, with certain exceptions, much reliance on adult classification systems and criteria that have not proved entirely satisfactory. A recent International Consensus Conference held in Vienna in June 2005 attempted to rectify this state of affairs. It resulted in a new proposal for childhood vasculitis classification and proposals of classification criteria for several important categories of childhood vasculitis including Henoch–Schonlein purpura, Kawasaki disease, polyarteritis nodosa (with additionally definitions for cutaneous and microscopic polyarteritis), Wegener granulomatosis and Takayasu arteritis. The process involved the Delphi technique to gather a wide spectrum of opinion from pediatric rheumatologists and nephrologists followed by the Consensus Conference attended by a group of pediatricians with extensive vasculitis experience where nominal group techniques were utilized to agree on a general classification and classification criteria for individual childhood vasculitides. The consensus that was reached will hopefully provide pediatricians with a valuable tool in the study of childhood vasculitides but will require appropriate validation using patient and control groups.