Capillaroscopy is a non-invasive method for diagnosis of blood vessels. It involves assessment of blood circulation in the skin and mucous membranes. The test is performed using magnifying techniques. Capillaries are examined under a special microscope. The test site should be pre-wetted. Capillaroscopy is performed on Patients with Raynaud’s phenomenon (primary and secondary) – paroxysmal spasms of the arteries in the palm of accompanying the blanching of the fingers and increasing pain. Similar symptoms also appear in some rheumatic diseases. Capillaroscopy is also useful in the diagnosis of systemic sclerosis.
Elements that are assessed during the capillaroscopic study:
- System and the number of capillaries
- Skin clarity
- Shape, dimensions, and the occurrence of deformation of the vascular loops
- Blood flow
- The papillary venous plexus
Microscopic Capillaroscopy found widest application in the study of nailfold capillaroscopy, due to the fact that the capillary tube are arranged parallel to the skin’s surface.
The most commonly used techniques in capillaroscopy are:
- light capillaroscopy
- video capillaroscopy