Is it SSc-ILD? How to Properly Diagnose and Treat a Rare, Multifaceted Disease

Release Date: August 22, 2019
Last Reviewed: August 25, 2019
Expiration Date: August 22, 2020
Time to Complete Activity:  1.0 hour

*This activity expired for credit on August 22, 2020 and is no longer available for credit

Erica L. Herzog, MD, PhD (Chair)

Department of Internal Medicine
Section of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine
Director, Interstitial Lung Disease Center of Excellence
Yale School of Medicine
New Haven, CT
Virginia Steen, MD
Director, Rheumatology Fellowship Program
Interim Director, Division of Rheumatology
Georgetown University Medical Center
Washington, DC
Eric S. White, MD, MS, ATSF
Professor of Internal Medicine
Medical Director, Pulmonary & Critical Care Ambulatory Care Clinics
Director of Translational Interstitial Lung Disease Research
Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine
Michigan Medicine
Ann Arbor, MI
Contributing Faculty
Jay S. Leb, MD

Assistant Professor of Radiology
Department of Radiology
Columbia University Medical Center
New York, NY
This activity is provided by Paradigm Medical Communications, LLC.  
Target Audience
This activity has been designed to meet the educational needs of community and academic pulmonologists, rheumatologists, radiologists, dermatologists, and pathologists. It may also be of benefit to primary care physicians, PAs, nurse practitioners, nurses, pharmacists, fellows, residents, and other healthcare professionals involved in the care of patients with systemic sclerosis-associated interstitial lung disease (SSc-ILD).
Statement of Need
Patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc) typically suffer from chronic and disabling symptoms and sequelae. Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is nearly always involved, and its presence portends a poor prognosis and high risk of death. However, SSc presentations are heterogeneous, and diagnosis of SSc-ILD is often delayed. In addition, though most patients with SSc-ILD have an established diagnosis of SSc, some patients first present with pulmonary symptoms. Because there are many causes of ILD, clinicians must be able to distinguish SSc-ILD from other etiologies, as treatment and prognosis are often different.
Although immunotherapies are commonly used to manage SSc inflammation, none of the current options effectively target underlying lung fibrosis or affect the course of the disease. In addition, guidelines are not explicit with regard to when or how to begin treatment. Promising agents, including late-stage antifibrotic therapy and an interleukin-6 antagonist, are under investigation. Optimal treatment requires clinicians to stay up to date on the clinical data supporting the use of current and emerging treatments.

Learning Objectives
Upon proper completion of this activity, participants should be better able to:
• Accurately diagnose SSc-ILD based on presenting signs and symptoms and test results
• Formulate an appropriate, evidence-based treatment plan for patients who have SSc-ILD
• Identify effective strategies to communicate with patients about SSc-ILD to facilitate optimal treatment

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Disclosure of Commercial Support
This activity is supported by an independent educational grant from Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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In accordance with Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education requirements on disclosure, faculty and contributors are asked to disclose any relationships with commercial interests associated with the area of medicine featured in the activity. These relationships are described below.

Erica L. Herzog, MD, PhD

Grant/Research Support: Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc; Bristol-Myers Squibb Company; sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC
Retained Consultant: Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc; Genentech, Inc; Merck & Co., Inc

Virginia Steen, MD
Consulting Fees: CSL Behring

Eric S. White, MD, MS, ATSF
Grant/Research Support: Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc
Retained Consultant: Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc

Contributing Faculty
Jay S. Leb, MD

Consulting Fees: Arterys Inc

Paradigm Medical Communications, LLC, staff members have no financial relationships to disclose.

Independent peer reviewers have no financial relationships to disclose.

Independent fellow reviewer has no financial relationships to disclose.
Independent patient reviewer has no financial relationships to disclose.
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