Scleroderma is an autoimmune disease that can change the way our skin, blood vessels, muscles work together. The disease can affect just the skin, but it may also affect other organs within the body. People with scleroderma may have areas of thicker skin, stiffness, and feeling fatigued.
We don’t know what causes the condition, but some hypothesize that it is an autoimmune abnormality that some people are born with. It is important to remember that it is absolutely not contagious. Certain genetic factors within family histories may make it more likely that your child will develop scleroderma; interacting with another child with it will not cause them to develop the condition.
Scleroderma is caused by the abnormal growth of connective tissue. This is a result of the body’s immune system attacking healthy tissues. Doctors can diagnose patients based on a person’s symptoms; sometimes they will also recommend a skin biopsy or blood test.
If you have a child with scleroderma and you are trying to help them formulate an explanation for peers or siblings, we would love to help, using details about their specific diagnosis and experience. Please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org