Tongue necrosis as an initial manifestation of giant cell arteritis: case report and review of the literature

Jose Zaragoza, Natalia Vernon, Gisoo Ghaffari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Giant cell arteritis (GCA) is a systemic vasculitis of medium and large arteries that mainly affects the external carotid artery. It is a diagnosis of the elderly that typically presents as low-grade fever, temporal tenderness, claudication of the jaw, and in some patients vision loss. In cases where GCA presents with atypical manifestations, the diagnosis may be more difficult, causing a delay in both diagnosis and treatment and ultimately leading to irreversible complications. In this paper, we present an atypical presentation of GCA with symptoms of neck swelling and lingual pain in an elderly female. These symptoms progressed to bilateral necrosis and eventual dislodgement of the tongue. Lingual necrosis is a severe potential complication in GCA. In patients presenting with lingual swelling, pain, and discoloration, GCA should be suspected and prompt therapy should be initiated to avoid irreversible complications.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCase Reports in Rheumatology
Volume2015
StatePublished - 2015

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