Society

10 Autoimmune Diseases

Autoimmune diseases occur when the body's immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells.

The human body's immune system usually protects ones from infections and diseases. However, autoimmune diseases occur when the body's immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells affecting one or more parts of the body. There are more than eighty autoimmune diseases; the following are the few among them.

10. Lupus Nephritis

Lupus nephritis is a kidney disease caused by systemic lupus erythematosus. Lupus is a disorder whereby the immune system of the body attacks its cells and organs. Consequently, the glomeruli (functional cells) get inflamed and may with time lead to kidney failure, which requires dialysis or a kidney transplant as treatment.

9. Alopecia Areata

Alopecia areata, which is also called spot baldness, is a disorder in which body hair dies off in patches or across the whole body. It is an autoimmune disease that causes permanent bald spots that with time, depending on the mental ability of the affected individual, can lead to psychological stress.

8. Vitiligo

Vitiligo is a chronic skin disease that presents with some skin patches losing pigment. The affected parts turned white, and sharp edges characterize the spots. The occurrence is mostly initiated by environment elements, and make-up can be used to reduce the psychological effects.

7. Addison's Disease

Addison’s disease, also referred as hypocortisolism and primary adrenal insufficiency, is a chronic autoimmune disorder in which the adrenal glands produce fewer steroid hormones. The condition occurs when adrenal glands have problems leading to less production of their hormones: aldosterone and cortisol.

6. Crohn's Disease

Crohn's disease is a inflammatory bowel disease that affects any section of the gastrointestinal tract (GIT). The condition is caused by a mixture of immune, bacterial, and environmental factors in those people who are genetically predisposed. The immune system of the body attacks the wall of the GIT, perhaps intending to kill micro-bacteria antigens.

5. Evans Syndrome

Evans syndrome is a type of autoimmune disease whereby the body’s antibodies fight against platelets and red blood cells. The condition progresses pathologically like the co-occurrence of autoimmune blood disorders: thrombocytopenic purpura and hemolytic anemia. Autoimmune hemolytic anemia is a disorder whereby the red blood cells are eaten up by the body’s activated immune system, while in immune thrombocytopenic purpura, the autoimmune action destroys the platelets.

4. Juveline Arthritis

Juvenile Arthritis is an autoimmune condition with no known cause, and it is mostly stated juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). The results of JIA is the inflammation of the joints with less effects on cartilage and stability of the joint without rheumatoid characteristics. The differentiating symptoms from other diseases are prolonged swelling of the joints affected, which are mostly ankle and wrist.

3. Progressive Inflammatory Neuropathy

Progressive inflammatory neuropathy is an autoimmune disease which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published in its report of January 31, 2008. It was first reported in the United States among workers working in pig slaughterhouses. The disease presents with pain, sudden paralysis, fatigue, weakness, and numbness, particularly in extremities.

2. Stiff Person Syndrome

Stiff person syndrome is a neurological condition that presents with worsening body stiffness and rigidity. The truncal muscles are mostly affected by stiffness, accompanied by spasms which lead to abnormal positioning. The primary disorder characteristics occur along with lumbar hyperlordosis and inability to move. The cause is not known, but body antibodies called GAD is thought to play a role.

1. Kawasaki's Disease

Kawasaki disease, also known as mucocutaneous lymph node syndrome, is a disorder whereby the blood vessels get inflamed. The primary symptom is a fever that persists for at least five days and cannot be lower by medications, accompanied with red eyes and swollen neck lymph nodes. There is no known cause; however, it is postulated to be the results of autoimmune response activated by infection.

More in Society