Giant Cell Arteritis: Practical Pearls and Updates

  • Swati Pradeep
  • Jonathan H. SmithEmail author
Secondary Headache (M Robbins, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Secondary Headache


Purpose of Review

The purpose of this review is to summarize recent updates and distill practical points from the literature which can be applied to the care of patients with suspected and confirmed giant cell arteritis (GCA).

Recent Findings

Contemporary thinking implicates a fundamental failure of T regulatory cell function in GCA pathophysiology, representing opportunity for novel therapeutic avenues. Tocilizumab has become the first Food and Drug Administration-approved treatment for GCA following demonstration of efficacy and safety in a phase 3 clinical trial.


There have been significant parallel advances in both our understanding of GCA pathophysiology and treatment. Tocilizumab, and other agents currently under investigation in phase 2 and 3 clinical trials, presents a new horizon of hope for both disease remission and avoidance of glucocorticoid-related complications.


Giant cell arteritis Temporal arteritis Secondary headache Older adults Tocilizumab Pathophysiology 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Swati Pradeep and Jonathan H. Smith declare no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: •• Of major importance

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of NeurologyUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA

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