Vasculitis is the inflammation (swelling) of the blood vessels, the network of hollow tubes that carry blood throughout the body. Cerebral vasculitis or central nervous system vasculitis is inflammation of blood vessel walls in the brain or spine. CNS vasculitis often occurs in the following situations:
· Accompanied by other autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus, dermatomyositis, and, rarely, rheumatoid arthritis
· Infection, such as viral or bacterial
· Systemic (affecting the whole body) vasculitic disorders (granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA), microscopic polyangiitis, Behçets syndrome).CNS vasculitis can be a serious condition. The inflamed vessel wall can block the flow of oxygen to the brain, causing a loss of brain function.
Symptoms of CNS vasculitis involves severe headaches that last a long time, strokes or transient ischemic attacks (mini-strokes), forgetfulness or confusion, weakness, problems with eyesight, seizures, encephalopathy (swelling and damage to the brain) and sensation abnormalities