Treatment of pediatric localized scleroderma: Results of a survey of North American pediatric rheumatologists

Suzanne C. Li, Brian M. Feldman, Gloria C. Higgins, Kathleen A. Haines, Marilynn G. Punaro, Kathleen M. O'Neil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Scopus citations


Objective. We surveyed pediatric rheumatologists (PR) in North America to learn how they treat pediatric localized scleroderma (LS), a disease associated with significant morbidity for the growing child. Methods. A Web-based survey was sent to the 195 PR members of the pediatric rheumatology research alliance CARRA (Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance). Members were asked which medications they use to treat LS and which factors modify their treatment strategies. Clinical vignettes were provided to learn the specific treatment regimens used. Results. A total of 158 PR from over 70 clinical centers in the United States and Canada participated in the survey, representing 81% of the CARRA membership. These PR saw over 650 patients with LS in the prior year. Nearly all respondents treated LS with methotrexate (MTX) and corticosteroids; most of them intensify treatment for lesions located on the face or near a joint, and about half intensify treatment for recent disease onset (< 6 months). Most PR reserve topical medications for limited treatment situations. Clinical vignettes showed that PR use a broad range of treatment doses and durations for MTX and corticosteroids. Conclusion.Most PR in NorthAmerica treat localized scleroderma with a combination ofMTX and corticosteroids. However, there is no consensus on specific treatment regimens. There is a need for controlled treatment trials to better determine optimal therapy for this potentially disabling disease. The Journal of Rheumatology

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-181
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Rheumatology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010


  • Drug therapy
  • Localized scleroderma
  • Pediatrics
  • Survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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