SymptomsBy Mayo Clinic staff
CLICK TO ENLARGE
Stage 1 symptoms
Takayasu's arteritis symptoms often occur in two stages. In the first stage, you're likely to feel unwell with:
- Fast and unintentional weight loss
- Muscle aches
- Joint pain
- Slight fever
Not everyone has these early symptoms, however. It's possible for inflammation to damage arteries for years before you realize something is wrong.
Stage 2 symptoms
Second-stage symptoms begin to develop when inflammation has caused arteries to narrow. At this point, there's less blood, oxygen and nutrients reaching your organs and tissues. These signs and symptoms may include:
- Arm or leg weakness or pain with use (claudication)
- Lightheadedness or dizziness
- Memory problems
- Trouble thinking
- Shortness of breath
- Visual problems
- High blood pressure
- Difference in blood pressure between your arms
- A difficult-to-find or absent pulse in the wrists — Takayasu's arteritis is sometimes called pulseless disease because narrowed arteries can make normal pulses difficult or impossible to detect
- Too few red blood cells (anemia)
- Chest pain
- Abdominal pain
When to see a doctor
If you have symptoms that might suggest Takayasu's arteritis, see your doctor. Many signs and symptoms of Takayasu's arteritis are similar to those of other conditions, which can make diagnosis challenging. Still, early detection of the disease is important for getting the most benefit from treatment and preventing complications.
If you've already been diagnosed with Takayasu's arteritis, keep in mind that the symptoms of a disease flare (recurrence) are often similar to those that occurred originally. Also pay attention to any new signs or symptoms. These may indicate either a disease flare or a complication of treatment.
- Takayasu's arteritis. Vasculitis Foundation. http://staging.vasculitisfoundation.org/education/forms/takayasus-arteritis/ Accessed Jan. 22, 2013.
- Imboden JB, et al. Current Rheumatology Diagnosis & Treatment. 2nd ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2007. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=38. Accessed Jan. 22, 2013.
- Minagar A, et al. Neurologic presentations of systemic vasculitides. Neurology Clinics. 2010;28:171.
- Longo DL, et al. Harrison's Online. 18th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=4. Accessed Jan. 22, 2013.
- Takayasu's arteritis. American College of Rheumatology. http://www.rheumatology.org/practice/clinical/patients/diseases_and_conditions/takayasusartritis.asp. Accessed Jan. 22, 2013.
- Mandal D, et al. Takayasu arteritis in pregnancy: An analysis from eastern India. Archives in Gynecology and Obstetrics. 2012;285:567.
- Ohigashi H, et al. Improved prognosis of Takayasu arteritis over the past decade. Circulation Journal. 2012;76:1004.
- Schmidt J, et al. Tumor necrosis factor inhibitors in patients with Takayasu arteritis: Experience from a referral center with long-term follow-up. Arthritis Care and Research. 2012;64:1079.
- Comarmond C, et al. Anti TNF-alpha in refractory Takayasu's arteritis: Cases series and review of the literature. Autoimmunity Reviews 2012;11:678.
- Salvarani C, et al. Tocilizumab:A novel therapy for patients with large-vessel vasculitis. Rheumatology. 2012;51:151.
- Shields RC (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn., Feb. 10, 2013.