SINCE the pathological changes of scleroderma involve to a great extent collagen fibers, this disease has been frequently grouped together with other conditions affecting collagen, such as lupus erythematosus disseminatus, rheumatic fever, polyarteritis nodosa and dermatomyositis. Kkmperer1 recently warned against using the term "collagen diseases," expressing the view that although certain common changes are observed in all these conditions there is no evidence that they are etiologically or functionally the same. Among the great variety of diseases which have shown a favorable therapeutic response to pituitary adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) or cortisone, this group, however, involving mesenchymal structures seems to be particularly influenced by use of the hormones, in many cases resulting in an improvement of the condition. Thorn and his co-workers2 separated diseases in which ACTH and cortisone appear "most useful" from those in which the hormones "may be useful" and those in which their value is questionable.
TAUBENHAUS M, LEV M. CLINICAL AND HISTOLOGICAL OBSERVATIONS ON A CASE OF SCLERODERMA TREATED WITH CORTISONE. AMA Arch Intern Med. 1951;87(4):583-593. doi:10.1001/archinte.1951.03810040108008