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UNDIFFERENTIATED AND MIXED CONNECTIVE TISSUE DISEASE

The connective tissues are responsible for supporting, connecting or separating different parts and organs of the body. It has many functions and if injured or damaged, can cause life-threatening medical conditions.

Undifferentiated connective tissues disease or UCTD is a medical disorder where the body’s immune system attacks its own tissues. It is called undifferentiated because it doesn’t meet the necessary criteria to describe any autoimmune disease. The signs and symptoms of UCTD can be the same as another disorder however one or more symptoms would appear or sometimes overlap. Alternatively, undifferentiated connective tissue disease is also called latent lupus or incomplete lupus.

People with autoimmune diseases can be considered to have UCTD. The signs and symptoms can vary from one person to the other and would greatly resemble the symptoms of disease in the connective tissues.

  • Fatigue
  • Feeling unwell most of the time
  • Fever
  • Dry eyes and mouth
  • Hair loss
  • Joint inflammation and joint pain
  • Reynaud’s phenomenon
  • Sun-sensitive rash
  • Ulcers in the mouth

Mixed connective tissue disease or MCTD has been believed to be the same as the undifferentiated type. However, some experts would not accept this idea because MCTD is associated with clear defined signs and symptoms.

One of the symptoms of MCTD is the Reynaud phenomenon where there will be sudden tingling or numbness including blue discoloration when exposed to cold weather and stressful situations. Additionally, symptoms include joint pain, swollen hands, muscle weakness, heartburn, difficulty in breathing, and problems in breathing.
Prompt and proper treatment is effective if the disease has been diagnosed during the disease early stage. Corticosteroid is usually the drug of choice and usually, high dosage is given to patients in severe cases.

For more information about UCTD and MCTRD, please visit:
http://www.msdmanuals.com
http://www.medicinenet.com
http://emedicine.medscape.com

If you think you are suffering from Undifferentiated and Mixed Connective Tissue Disease you should seek medical assistance. You may also be entitled to Social Security Disability Benefits. The SSA considered Undifferentiated and Mixed Connective Tissue Disease as a medical condition that would make you eligible for SSDI and SSI. Social Security Administration (SSA) maintains a “Listing of Medical Impairments” (known as the blue book) that automatically qualify you for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI).