Your browser does not support javascript:   Search for gard hereSearch for news-and-events here.

Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Print friendly version

Giant cell arteritis


Other Names for this Disease

  • Arteritis cranialis
  • Arteritis temporalis
  • Cranial arteritis
  • GCA
  • Horton's arteritis
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.

Overview

Giant cell arteritis, also known as “temporal arteritis” or “Horton's disease,” is a form of vasculitis affecting medium and large sized blood vessels, especially those of the aorta and arteries going from the aorta to the arms, legs and the head. Giant cell arteritis most frequently affects the arteries in the head, leading to narrowing and sometimes to complete blockage of the blood vessel. This results in the surrounding tissues being deprived of an adequate blood supply. When giant cell arteritis involves the arteries that supply blood to the eyes, blindness in one or both eyes may develop suddenly. Along with visual changes, the most common symptoms in giant cell arteritis include headaches, pain in the jaw or tongue muscles when eating or talking, tenderness of the scalp, fevers, and arthritis, particularly pain and stiffness of the shoulders and hips. This pain and stiffness of the shoulders and hips is called polymyalgia rheumatica. Polymyalgia rheumatica can occur without giant cell arteritis.
Last updated: 1/3/2012

References

  1. Information For Patients: Giant Cell Arteritis. Vasculitis Clinical Research Consortium. http://rarediseasesnetwork.epi.usf.edu/vcrc/learnmore/definitions.htm#gca. Accessed 9/19/2011.
Your Questions Answered
by the Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center

1 question(s) from the public on Giant cell arteritis have been answered. See questions and answers. You can also submit a new question.

Basic Information

  • MedlinePlus was designed by the National Library of Medicine to help you research your health questions, and it provides more information about this topic.
  • The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) support research into the causes, treatment, and prevention of arthritis and musculoskeletal and skin diseases, the training of basic and clinical scientists to carry out this research, and the dissemination of information on research progress in these diseases. Click on the link to view information on this topic.
  • The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) collects and disseminates research information related to neurological disorders. Click on the link to view information on this topic.
  • The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) is a federation of more than 130 nonprofit voluntary health organizations serving people with rare disorders. Click on the link to view information on this topic.

In Depth Information

  • The Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.  Access to this database is free of charge.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Giant cell arteritis. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.
  • eMedicine has several articles on this topic from the perspective of General Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Radiology, Pathology, and Ophthalmology. You may need to register to view the information online, but registration is free. Click on the links above to view the articles from this medical reference Web site.
Other Names for this Disease
  • Arteritis cranialis
  • Arteritis temporalis
  • Cranial arteritis
  • GCA
  • Horton's arteritis
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.