Sjögren’s Syndrome

Sjögren's syndrome ("SHOW-grins"), is an incurable chronic disease of the immune system that affects approximately 1% of the general population. women represent 90% of diagnosed cases. The disease most commonly appears after age 45, but is also seen in children and young adults.

In Sjögren's syndrome, the body's immune system attacks the glands that secrete fluid. Lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell) then attack and destroy these glands, causing painful dry eyes and mouth. Sjögren's syndrome causes dryness of mucous membranes such as the skin, nostrils and vagina. It can affect organs including the kidneys, digestive system, blood vessels, lungs, liver, pancreas and central nervous system. It is a disease that can affect the entire body. We recognize without hesitation that rheumatic discomfort is also an important symptom of Sjögren's syndrome.

When Sjögren's syndrome occurs alone without other connective tissue diseases, it is called primary Sjögren's syndrome. The secondary syndrome is the one associated with other connective tissue diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, neuropathy, myositis, scleroderma, Raynaud's syndrome, etc.

The prevalence of primary syndrome and secondary syndrome is approximately equal.

Although there is no known cure for Sjogren's syndrome, many of its symptoms can be relieved with simple corrective measures and consumer or prescription medications.

This information is intended for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for consultation with a healthcare professional.