Sarcoidosis is an autoimmune disease of unknown origin that can affect multiple organs and other body parts, particularly the lungs, lymph nodes, eyes and skin.
While there is no cure for sarcoidosis, the condition often goes away on its own, and patients who require treatment typically respond well and suffer no long-term damage. That said, if you experience symptoms that suggest sarcoidosis, it’s advisable to consult with your primary care doctor.
Symptoms of Sarcoidosis
Indicators of sarcoidosis vary widely, depending on which organ or organs are impacted. Early signs of sarcoidosis include:
- Persistent, dry cough
- Chronic fatigue
- Shortness of breath
As the condition progresses, other commonly reported symptoms include:
- Chest pain
- Reddish bumps on the skin or red, patchy skin
- Sores on the nose, cheeks or ears
- Reddish, teary eyes
- Blurred vision
- Pain or swelling in the joints
- Enlarged lymph glands in the neck, chest, armpits or groin
- Pain in the hands, feet or other bony regions where cysts have formed in the bones
- Kidney stones
- Enlarged liver
- Development of cardiac arrhythmia
In some, symptoms may emerge suddenly and be severe. Others may show no outward symptoms or have symptoms that develop slowly and subtly over an extended period of time.
Sarcoidosis Risk Factors
While anyone can develop sarcoidosis regardless of age, gender or race, the condition most often occurs between the ages of 20 and 40.
Sarcoidosis is more common among women than men. It also affects more African-Americans than Caucasians, although those of Scandinavian, German and Irish descent also seem more prone to the disease.
Sarcoidosis generally goes away on its own with time, and most patients with sarcoidosis do not require treatment.
When the condition threatens organ function, your doctor will likely prescribe medication based on the organ or organs affected. In rare cases, such as if sarcoidosis has advanced to affect the lungs or liver, surgery may be necessary.
If you suffer from signs of sarcoidosis, or if you’re seeking a knowledgeable and compassionate primary care doctor in the Littleton, Colorado, area, please contact Dr. Andy Fine online or call 303-703-8583 today.