Purpose of review
Kawasaki disease is a childhood vasculitis of unknown origin, whose major complication is the development of coronary artery aneurysms (CAA). The purpose of this review is to provide an overview on the most recent evidence on the pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment options of Kawasaki disease summarizing the most relevant studies published in the last year.
Several genetic polymorphisms leading to Kawasaki disease susceptibility have been identified, mostly related to immune system regulation; potential external triggers are being investigated by environmental epidemiology studies. A new diagnostic test based on trascriptomics has been tested with promising preliminary results. With regards to first-line treatments, the real effectiveness of high-dose aspirin remains a matter of debate. For refractory cases, the ones at the highest risk for developing CAA, promising results come from the use of biologic agents, especially TNF and IL-1 blockers.
Recent literature has provided interesting insights on the various factors involved in the complex scenario behind the pathogenesis of Kawasaki disease, especially genetic ones. Novel diagnostic tests and new evidence on the use of biologic agents in Kawasaki disease are emerging, but further evidence is needed to permit early diagnosis and effective treatment of this condition.