What is it?

Sjogren's disease (also called Sicca Syndrome) is an autoimmune disease - a disease in which the immune system attacks body tissues. Sjogren's disease includes impaired glandular activity responsible for creating moisture in the eyes, mouth and other areas, in a way that causes a feeling of dryness in these areas.

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Sjogren's syndrome (SjS, SS).

Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Keratoconjunctivitis sicca

Signs & symptoms

The main symptoms of Sjogren's disease are significant dryness in the eyes and mouth (usually described as sandy or gritty feeling in the eyes), increased thirst, eyes redness and blurred vision. Other symptoms may include fatigue, dry and itchy skin and muscle and joint pain. Other body systems that may be affected are the digestive system, urinary system and genital system.

Diagnosis

The diagnosis of Sjogren's disease will usually include a physical examination, blood and urine tests and an eye examination. In some cases, it will also be necessary to perform a biopsy - taking a small sample of tissue (usually from the mouth area) and examining it under a microscope to look for signs typical of the syndrome. As part of the diagnosis, the doctor may perform additional tests aimed at ruling out other possible causes of dryness - such as infections and other illnesses.

Treatment

The goal of treatment for Sjogren's syndrome is to relieve symptoms.
- Dry eyes will be treated with artificial tears or eye creams or ointments.
- Dry mouth can be alleviated by drinking a lot and using various medical sprays.
- Additional symptoms, such as joint pain, will be treated depending on their presence.
- In some cases, Sjogren's disease will be treated with drugs that suppress the immune system.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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