Scleroderma - Prognosis


Individuals with morphea or limited scleroderma have a relatively positive outlook. They will rarely die from the scleroderma. Those with very widespread skin and organ involvement (systemic) have a negative prognosis. More women have scleroderma, but the disease kills more men. Following diagnosis, two-thirds of patients live at least 11 years. The higher the patient's age at diagnosis, the more likely he or she is to die from the disease.

People with scleroderma have very different life expectancies. Some — for example, those with limited or mild diffuse disease — can expect to live 20 to 50 years after diagnosis. Others with severe, rapidly progressive disease — a group which makes up less than 10% of the total number of patients with diffuse scleroderma — might have a 50% chance of a five-year survival.

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