Cutaneous necrotizing vasculitis (CNV) is one of a group of vasculitis disorders. CNV is characterized by inflammation and tissue damage of the blood vessel walls (necrosis). This damage causes lesions of the skin (cutaneous). Cutaneous necrotizing vasculitis may present with small reddish or purple colored lesions on the skin, called purpura. These purpura are often a sign or result of bleeding beneath the skin due to damage to the blood vessels. Other symptoms may include general fatigue, fevers, muscle soreness, and overall discomfort and illness.
CNV can be a primary disease or it can occur as a result of other underlying medical conditions including infection and some autoimmune disorders. Other factors that are thought to be associated with CNV include hypersensitivity to medications or environmental toxins. Although the skin is typically the only sign of involvement, it is possible that these are early signs of systemic (internal and widespread) involvement. Biopsies (tissue samples) are often needed to properly diagnose CNV. Treatment options include anti-viral therapy and other medications. If you or a family member has been diagnosed with CNV, talk with your doctor about the most current treatment options.