Nephrogenic systemic fibrosis: an update

Curr Rheumatol Rep. 2006 Apr;8(2):151-7. doi: 10.1007/s11926-006-0056-9.


Nephrogenic systemic fibrosis (NSF), previously known as nephrogenic fibrosing dermopathy, is an emerging systemic fibrosing disorder that develops in the setting of renal insufficiency. Since its recognition in 1997, several case reports of NSF have been published in the rheumatology literature, reflecting the increasing incidence and recognition of this disorder in the United States and abroad. As rheumatology professionals are commonly the first to encounter newly developing cases, it is imperative that they recognize the symptoms and comorbidities of NSF and initiate work-up and treatment. To date, the precise causes of NSF have not been established; however, several promising lines of inquiry have led to a new model of the disorder. This model speculates that circulating fibrocytes of bone marrow origin are aberrantly recruited to the skin and other systemic sites by a process likely triggered or exacerbated by endothelial damage.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Fibrosis
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / complications*
  • Skin / pathology*
  • Skin Diseases / etiology*
  • Skin Diseases / pathology