Friday, September 17, 2010

Sarcoidosis is a relatively rare autoimmune disease that can affect the skin, lungs, heart, brain and nervous system, eyes and other organs. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about this condition in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory disease that affects multiple organs in the body, primarily the lungs and lymph glands. In people with sarcoidosis, abnormal masses or nodules consisting of inflamed tissues form in certain organs of the body. These granulomas may alter the normal structure and function of the affected organs.

In many people with sarcoidosis, the disease appears briefly and then disappears without the person even knowing they have the disease.

The symptoms of sarcoidosis can vary greatly, depending on which organs are involved. Most patients initially complain of a persistent dry cough, fatigue and shortness of breath.

Symptoms may begin suddenly and subside in a short period of time. Others may have no outward symptoms at all even though organs are affected.

The exact cause of sarcoidosis is not known. There is no cure for sarcoidosis, but the disease may get better on its own over time. Treatment is given to reduce symptoms and maintain the proper function of the affected organs.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.