The knowledge that systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) may present itself with numerous clinical syndromes has evolved particularly since the discovery of LE cells by Hargraves, Richmond, and Morton 1 in 1948. This disclosure allowed recognition of the relation of these syndromes, which were formerly considered idiopathic, to SLE.
In spite of the fact that SLE is a mesenchymal disease that predominantly involves the arteriolar and venous vessels,2 the peripheral vascular manifestations either have received little attention in the literature or are truly uncommon. The latter possibility might be due to the fact that the degenerative process in this disease predominantly involves small arteries and arterioles as opposed to the inflammatory process in polyarteritis nodosa which affects medium-sized arteries.3 Raynaud's phenomenon may accompany or even be the presenting complaint of SLE.4"7 Dubois4 found this phenomenon in 26% of 63 cases, and in five it was the presenting complaint. Less emphasized in the literature has been