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What are some symptoms of Henoch-Schonlein purpura syndrome?

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Quick Answer

The most universal, distinctive symptom of Henoch-Schonlein purpura is a reddish-purple rash that resembles bruising on the buttocks, feet and legs, though the rash may also appear on the face, arms and torso, states Mayo Clinic. Other symptoms include sore, swollen joints, particularly the knees and ankles; gastrointestinal upset such as nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, or blood in the stool and blood or protein in the urine.

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Full Answer

A bleeding and inflammation disorder, Henoch-Schonlein purpura most commonly affects children between the ages of 2 and 6 years, although it can affect persons of any age, according to Mayo Clinic. The disorder primarily affects the skin's small blood vessels, the intestines, the joints and the kidneys. While Henoch-Schonlein purpura usually resolves on its own within a month, recurrence is common, and in some rare cases, kidney damage and bowel obstruction is possible. It is important to seek medical attention if a person, especially a child, exhibits the reddish-purple rash associated with the disorder. Once complications are ruled out, bed rest, over-the-counter pain medications and fluids help relieve the symptoms while the patient recovers.

A definitive cause for developing Henoch-Schonlein purpura is not known, although about half of patients who develop it do so after recovering from an upper respiratory tract infection, says Mayo Clinic. Other risk factors include infectious diseases such as chicken pox, measles or strep throat; certain medications and exposure to cold.

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