The month of April is recognized as Sjögren’s Awareness Month, a time for spreading awareness about the autoimmune disease Sjögren’s syndrome in the medical community and among the general public. Though this disease is estimated to impact as many as 4 million people in the US, the illness is still one of the less-well known of autoimmune illnesses. The Sjögren’s Foundation is highlighting a different patient every day in April in its 2021 This is Sjögren’s campaign. The organization also has other ways that can allow people to get involved.
About Sjögren’s Syndrome
Sjögren’s syndrome is a chronic, autoimmune disorder that specifically impacts the moisture-producing glands of the body. It is most distinguished by dry skin, eyes, and mouth. The disease often manifests in the fourth or fifth decade of life. Vaginal dryness is also a problem for female patients, who are more commonly affected than men. A combination of genetic predisposition alongside an environmental triggering event (such as an infection) are believed to cause Sjögren’s syndrome. A family history of autoimmune disease should be considered a risk factor. Aside from persistent dryness in various areas of the body, disease progression can cause more systemic symptoms, like fatigue, difficulty swallowing, joint pain, and kidney dysfunction. The syndrome also increases risk of other autoimmune diseases and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Treatment is symptomatic and includes NSAIDs, artificial tears, and other immunosuppressant drugs. To learn more about Sjögren’s syndrome, click here.
Do you want to get involved in Sjögren’s Awareness Month? Here’s how:
- Do you live with Sjögren’s syndrome? Submit your story for a chance to have it featured this month. Click here to get started. Don’t forget to use the #ThisIsSjögrens hashtag on social media.
- Follow the Sjögren’s Foundation on social media.
- Click here to purchase a Sjögren’s Awareness Kit. All proceeds support the Sjögren’s Foundation.
- Update your social media profile picture with this awareness frame.
- Click here to become a Foundation member.
Are you ready to get involved? Click here for more info about Sjögren’s Awareness Month.