Frequently Asked Questions About Sarcoidosis

Frequently Asked Questions About Sarcoidosis

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  • Sarcoidosis symptoms vary depending on the affected organs, and this is why some people experience indicators in their lungs, skin, eyes or other body parts
  • The cause of sarcoidosis is still unknown. So far, researchers have concluded that there are bacteria, viruses, dust or chemicals that can trigger the disease, as well as environmental and hereditary factors
  • Sarcoidosis prevention essentially begins with avoiding or stopping smoking

Q: What does sarcoidosis look like?

A: Sarcoidosis causes the development of granulomas, a pattern of inflammation inside the body that’s mainly composed of immune cells.1 On the outside, sarcoidosis patients notice lumps, ulcers (sores) or areas of discolored skin that are itchy but not painful. These can be found on the back, arms, legs and scalp.2

Q: How do you get sarcoidosis?

A: The cause of sarcoidosis is still unknown. So far, researchers have concluded that there are bacteria, viruses, dust or chemicals that can trigger the disease, as well as environmental and hereditary factors.3, 4

A patient can have sarcoidosis when his or her immune system malfunctions and prompts the body to attack its own tissues and organs. This leads to an inflammation that causes the granulomas.5, 6

Q: Is sarcoidosis hereditary?

A: Initially, it’s said that people with a family history of sarcoidosis are more likely to have the disease.7 However, more research is needed to fully establish this genetic link.8

Q: What are the common symptoms of sarcoidosis?

A: Sarcoidosis symptoms vary depending on the affected organs, and this is why some people experience indicators in their lungs, skin, eyes or other body parts. If you or someone you know experiences swollen lymph nodes, tender and red bumps on the skin, fever and weight loss, consult a physician immediately since these are the most common signs of sarcoidosis.9, 10

Q: How is sarcoidosis diagnosed, and what tests are needed to know if you have sarcoidosis?

A: Diagnosing sarcoidosis involves multiple steps. Your physician will likely inquire about your medical history, especially if you’ve had a family history of the disease or were exposed to the chemicals that may cause sarcoidosis. Your physician will also check for sarcoidosis symptoms and listen to your lungs and heart.11

Once these steps are done, your physician could recommend further testing on organs where initial sarcoidosis indicators were spotted. Examples include a chest X-ray, computerized tomography (CT) scan, positron emission tomography (PET) scan or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), blood tests, eye exam and pulmonary function tests.12

Q: Are there natural treatments for sarcoidosis?

A: Yes. Turmeric, aloe vera, goldenseal, bromelain and licorice are notable natural remedies for sarcoidosis.13, 14

Q: How can you prevent sarcoidosis from affecting you?

A: Sarcoidosis prevention essentially begins with avoiding or stopping smoking. Even though smoking itself doesn’t cause this condition, breathlessness caused by injuries to breathing tubes or the onset of either bronchitis or emphysema could occur. Furthermore, smoking exacerbates any lung disease, and it’s known that the lungs are grossly affected by sarcoidosis.15 Other prevention techniques to combat this disease include:16, 17

Avoiding exposure to dust, chemicals, fumes and toxic gases

Drinking six to eight glasses of high-quality, filtered water daily18

Getting adequate sleep

Washing your hands properly

MORE ABOUT SARCOIDOSIS

Introduction: Sarcoidosis

What Is Sarcoidosis?

Sarcoidosis Symptoms

Sarcoidosis Treatment

Sarcoidosis Prevention

Sarcoidosis Diet

Sarcoidosis FAQ

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