Vasculitis describes any one of a number of diseases that causes inflammation of the blood vessels. This inflammation affects the vessel itself, and can cause damage such as thinning, thickening or scarring of the vessels. In severe cases, blood flow to the affected areas can be restricted, leading to tissue damage and possibly death.
Many cases of vasculitis will resolve themselves without treatment. However, other forms may require ongoing treatment for the life of the patient to keep them from recurring.