Medications

No drug has been developed that can stop the underlying process of scleroderma — the overproduction of collagen. But a variety of medications can help control scleroderma symptoms or help prevent complications. To accomplish this, these drugs may:

Dilate blood vessels

Blood pressure medications that dilate blood vessels may help prevent lung and kidney problems and may help treat Raynaud's disease.

Suppress the immune system

Drugs that suppress the immune system, such as those taken after organ transplants, may help reduce scleroderma symptoms.

Reduce stomach acid

Medications such as omeprazole (Prilosec) can relieve symptoms of acid reflux.

Prevent infections

Antibiotic ointment, cleaning and protection from the cold may help prevent infection of fingertip ulcers caused by Raynaud's disease. Regular influenza and pneumonia vaccinations can help protect lungs that have been damaged by scleroderma.

Relieve pain

If over-the-counter pain relievers don't help enough, you can ask your doctor to prescribe stronger medications.

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