Sarcoidosis is a disease that leads to inflammation, usually in your lungs, skin, or lymph nodes. It starts as tiny, grain-like lumps, called granulomas. Sarcoidosis can affect any organ in your body.

No one is sure what causes sarcoidosis. It affects men and women of all ages and races. It occurs mostly in people ages 20 to 50, African Americans, especially women, and people of Northern European origin.

Many people have no symptoms. If you have symptoms, they may include

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weight loss
  • Night sweats
  • Fatigue

Tests to diagnose sarcoidosis include chest x-rays, lung function tests, and a biopsy. Not everyone who has the disease needs treatment. If you do, prednisone, a type of steroid, is the main treatment.

NIH: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Symptoms of Sarcoidosis

The following features are indicative of Sarcoidosis:
  • fatigue
  • fever
  • swollen lymph nodes
  • persistent dry cough
  • shortness of breath
  • disfiguring sores on the nose, cheeks and ears
  • blurred vision
  • sensitivity to light
  • shortness of breath
It is possible that Sarcoidosis shows no physical symptoms and still is present in a patient.

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Common Causes of Sarcoidosis

The following are the most common causes of Sarcoidosis:
  • genetic factor
  • exposure to bacteria or viruses
  • exposure to dust or chemicals

Risk Factors for Sarcoidosis

The following factors may increase the likelihood of Sarcoidosis:
  • 20 and 40 aged persons
  • African-Americans race
  • family history

Prevention of Sarcoidosis

No, it is not possible to prevent Sarcoidosis.
  • mutation in the BTNL2 and HLA-DR gene

Occurrence of Sarcoidosis

Number of Cases

The following are the number of Sarcoidosis cases seen each year worldwide:
  • Common between 1 - 10 Million cases

Common Age Group

Sarcoidosis most commonly occurs in the following age group:
  • Aged between 20-50 years

Common Gender

Sarcoidosis can occur in any gender.

Lab Tests and Procedures for Diagnosis of Sarcoidosis

The following lab tests and procedures are used to detect Sarcoidosis:
  • Physical exam: To examine the skin lesions
  • Chest X-ray: To check for lung damage or enlarged lymph nodes
  • Computerized tomography (CT scan): To suspect the complications
  • Positron emission tomography (PET) scan or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): To suspect the affected heart or central nervous system
  • Blood tests: To assess the overall health and how well the kidneys and liver function
  • Lung (pulmonary) function tests: To measure the lung volume
  • Eye exam: To check for vision problems caused by sarcoidosis
  • Biopsy: To view the microscopic views of skin lesions

Doctor for Diagnosis of Sarcoidosis

Patients should visit the following specialists if they have symptoms of Sarcoidosis:
  • Rheumatologist
  • Neurologist
  • Pulmonologist

Complications of Sarcoidosis if untreated

Yes, Sarcoidosis causes complications if it is not treated. Below is the list of complications and problems that may arise if Sarcoidosis is left untreated:
  • permanent scarring in the lungs
  • kidney failure
  • abnormal heart rhythms
  • inflammation in the facial nerves

Procedures for Treatment of Sarcoidosis

The following procedures are used to treat Sarcoidosis:
  • Surgery: Organ transplant may be considered if disease has severely damaged the lungs, heart or liver

Self-care for Sarcoidosis

The following self-care actions or lifestyle changes may help in the treatment or management of Sarcoidosis:
  • Avoid sedentary lifestyle: Helps in the management of overall health

Patient Support for Treatment of Sarcoidosis

The following actions may help Sarcoidosis patients:
  • Talking with a counselor: If you have trouble in coping, talk to your counsellor
  • Join support group: Helps in boosting the confidence

Time for Treatment of Sarcoidosis

While time-period of treatment for each patient may vary, below is the typical time-period for Sarcoidosis to resolve if treated properly under an expert supervision:
  • More than 1 year

Related Topics

Last updated date

This page was last updated on 2/04/2019.
This page provides information for Sarcoidosis.

Related Topics

Pulmonary Rehabilitation

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