More Details on Sarcoidosis
If you are thinking about getting pregnant, you should talk to your doctor about how sarcoidosis may affect your pregnancy. Pregnancy usually doesn't affect the course of sarcoidosis, but it may flare up after delivery.
You can continue taking corticosteroids during your pregnancy. None of the other drugs that are used to treat sarcoidosis are recommended for use during pregnancy.
If you are pregnant, you should have good prenatal care and sarcoidosis checkups, both during and after pregnancy.
Sarcoidosis was identified in the late 1860s. Since then, scientists have developed better tests to diagnose sarcoidosis and have made advances in treating it.
Research continues to be done to improve the diagnosis and treatment of the disease. Scientists are studying drugs that are used for other conditions to see if they can help people who have sarcoidosis. These drugs include several strong immune system suppressants (immunosuppressives), tetracycline antibiotics, and thalidomide.
Scientists also are conducting research to find out more about what causes sarcoidosis, why it seems to act differently in people of different races, and what genes are involved.
(Click Sarcoidosis Research for more information.)
The following points are important to keep in mind regarding sarcoidosis:
- Sarcoidosis involves inflammation that produces tiny lumps of cells called granulomas in various organs in your body. These granulomas can grow and clump together, making several large and small groups of lumps. If many granulomas form in an organ, they may affect how the organ works and can cause symptoms.
- Sarcoidosis can occur in almost any part of your body, although it usually starts in either your lungs or lymph nodes. It also often affects your skin, eyes, and liver. Sarcoidosis can also affect your spleen, brain, nerves, and heart.
- The course of sarcoidosis varies greatly among people. Sometimes, it's mild, and the symptoms may go away within a few years, even without treatment. But sometimes it slowly gets worse over the years and can cause permanent organ damage.
- Sarcoidosis affects men and women of all ages and races worldwide. It occurs mostly in people ages 20 to 40; African Americans, especially women; and people of Asian, German, Irish, Puerto Rican, and Scandinavian descent.