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Sjogren's syndrome, 9 out of 10 patients are women

Sjogren's syndrome, 9 out of 10 patients are women

Sjogren's syndrome is part of the picture of autoimmune diseases that attack the glands that produce humor. It is characterized mainly by the dryness of the mouth and eyes and can seriously affect daily activities and quality of life. There is no treatment, but there are methods to improve and prevent unpleasant symptoms.

This disease causes inflammation of the glands responsible for the production of tears and saliva. It causes the production of tears and saliva to decrease, leading to a drying sensation of the mouth and eyes.

What are the causes?

It is not known exactly the causes of Sjogren's syndrome, there are scientific data that attest that there is a genetic risk factor and that the disease would be transmitted by hereditary route. Also, the disease is common among those who still have patients in the family and other autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus, autoimmune thyroid disease, type 1 diabetes.

It seems that the female sex is more prone to this condition, because 90% of the patients diagnosed with this disease are women.

What are the signs and symptoms of Sjogren's syndrome?

The main 2 symptoms of this condition are dry mouth and eyes. There may also be other dry sensations in the nose, skin, vagina, etc. These reactions lead to other associated symptoms:

  • difficulty swallowing and chewing;

  • dry neck leading to dry cough;

  • thirsty sensation at night;

  • speech difficulties;

  • hoarseness;

  • cracks and redness in the edges of the mouth;

  • red eyes, dry and itchy;

  • blurry vision;

  • eye sensitivity to bright light that makes watching TV or reading difficult.

Almost every system of the body can be affected by this autoimmune disease. Symptoms depend on the areas that are affected and may include:

  • painful edema in the salivary glands;

  • fatigue (even exhaustion);

  • joint pain (arthralgia) and sometimes swelling of the joints;

  • dry skin and itching sensation;

  • Raynaud's phenomenon - fingers and toes with red-purple lesions;

  • uncomfortable sexual contacts (painful penetration);

  • acid reflux and gastric burns;

  • bladder inflammation causes frequent urination.

How is Sjogren's syndrome treated?

This condition is extremely serious, because the symptoms and manifestations of the disease can severely interfere with the daily activities of the sick person. Unfortunately, there is no treatment that can completely cure this disease, the therapeutic behavior focusing on controlling the symptoms and preventing their occurrence.

Therefore, doctors may prescribe treatments to reduce the manifestations in the affected parts of the syndrome.

Dry eyes can be prevented with artificial tears and lubricating eye ointments that can be used at night. Attention, the use of the hair dryer accentuates the ocular dryness, so it is best to avoid it as much as possible. If you experience redness, itching and itching you should go to the ophthalmologist to prescribe an appropriate treatment.

The sensation of dry mouth can be improved by the increased water consumption, the use of air humidifiers and the corresponding dental hygiene. The glands can be stimulated to produce saliva by ingesting drops of lemon juice. The doctor may also prescribe certain drops or medications to improve the symptom depending on other conditions that may be associated (infections, dental conditions, etc.).

Saline drops can be successfully used for prophylaxis of nasal airway dryness, and for dry vagina condition, lubricants are essential before any sexual contact.

If infections occur in one of these areas, doctors may prescribe antibiotics. And if lymph node cancer, a very rare complication of this syndrome, is treated independently.

Tags Autoimmune diseases Dry vagina