Study objectives: To determine whether primary
pulmonary hypertension (PPH) is associated with scleroderma-like
changes in nailfold capillaries.
prospective, case-control study.
medical centers in Baltimore, MD.
Thirty-seven patients with PPH, 15 patients with scleroderma, and 13
healthy control subjects.
underwent nailfold capillary videomicroscopy of the fourth digits of
both hands. Capillary images were evaluated by two blinded, trained
graders according to standardized criteria for the presence of
scleroderma nailfold changes.
Results: The prevalence
of scleroderma-associated nailfold changes in patients with PPH (1 of
37 patients) was dramatically lower than that in patients with
scleroderma (9 of 15 patients; p < 0.0001). The distribution of
nailfold grades for the PPH patients was indistinguishable from that of
the healthy control subjects.
Conclusion: PPH is not
associated with scleroderma-like vasculopathy of nailfold