Takayasu’s arteritis is a chronic inflammatory autoimmune condition that affects the largest blood vessel in the body (the aorta) and its branches. Thus, the complications of Takayasu’s arise directly or indirectly from damage to these blood vessels. The vasculitides are classified according to the size of blood vessel involved. Takayasu’s is the classic “large vessel” vasculitis. Takayasu’s arteritis is occasionally called “pulseless disease”, because of the difficulty in detecting peripheral pulses that sometimes occurs as a result of the vascular narrowings. The “typical” patient with Takayasu’s arteritis is a woman under the age of 40. There is a 9:1 female predominance in this disease. Although the disease has a worldwide distribution, it appears to occur more often in Asian women. Takayasu’s arteritis is a rare disease. The best estimates of the disease frequency suggest that 2 or 3 cases occur each year per million people in a population. Because TAK can cause heart problems, high blood pressure and stroke, patients with TAK should talk to their doctor about ways to lower the risk of these serious problems.