Intracerebral Calcification in Systemic Sclerosis

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Background and PurposeAdvanced cerebrovascular wall calcification was recently observed at autopsy in 2 patients with systemic sclerosis. To further investigate this issue, we conducted a prospective CT study of scleroderma patients to detect intracerebral calcification.MethodsThirty-seven consecutive patients with systemic sclerosis underwent unenhanced brain CT. Images were blindly interpreted, together with those of 2 age-matched (±1 year) and sex-matched control subjects per patient.ResultsIntracerebral calcification was found in 12 patients (32.4%) and 7 controls (9.5%) (P=0.006). Among the patients, intracerebral calcification was associated with the duration of Raynaud's phenomenon (P=0.005) and not with age (P=0.086).ConclusionsIntracerebral calcification is closely associated with scleroderma, which suggests that scleroderma causes primary cerebrovascular changes.

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