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What are telangiectasia?

Telangiectasia are dilated venules, capillaries, and arterioles. In SSc they tend to be matte telangiectasia, which are oval or polygonal macules 2 to 7 mm in diameter found on the hands, face, lips, and oral mucosa. They are seen more commonly with limited SSc. Telangiectasia are usually harmless but can be a cosmetic problem. They may disappear spontaneously over time. Laser therapy has been used to remove them with some success, but commonly they will return. When they occur in the GI mucosa (called “watermelon stomach” or GAVE), they can bleed, leading to iron deficiency anemia.

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