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Introduction to Connective Tissue Disorders in Children

By Frank Pessler, MD, PhD, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research;Hannover Medical School, Braunschweig, Germany;Hannover, Germany

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There are over 200 disorders that involve connective tissue. Certain disorders are characterized by overactivity of the immune system with resulting inflammation and systemic damage to the tissues (eg, systemic lupus erythematosus [SLE] and juvenile idiopathic arthritis [formerly known as juvenile rheumatoid arthritis]). Other disorders involve biochemical abnormalities or structural defects of the connective tissue. Some of these disorders are inherited, and some are of unknown etiology.