Sarcoidosis symptoms

Also in sarcoidosis (Boeck's disease) as in all systemic diseases (for example SLE, scleroderma, cystic fibrosis, psoriasis or rheumatism) the spectrum of possible symptoms is large. This is because there is connective tissue throughout the body, so very different organs and different regions may be affected by the inflammatory reactions. The following is an overview of sarcoidosis symptoms with the upper percentages for the frequency - the data in the literature vary widely.

Where do you get symptoms of sarcoidosis?

  • Lymph nodes up to 100%
  • Lungs (including bronchi and upper airways) up to 95%
  • Liver up to 85%
  • Eyes up to 80%
  • Spleen up to 70%
  • Salivary glands up to 30%
  • Skin up to 25%
  • Skeletal muscle up to 25%
  • Heart up to 25%
  • Kidneys up to 25%
  • Nervous system (neurosarcoidosis) up to 15%

Symptoms of Acute Sarcoidosis (Löfgren Syndrome)

Sarcoidosis occurs in acute form in about one-third of cases and more commonly in women. Typical is a sudden enlargement of the lymph nodes in the area of ​​the lung root (bihilar lymphadenopathy), which, however, is only visible in the X-ray image. Often, a high fever of over 39 ° C occurs. In four out of five cases this is accompanied by joint pain and joint swelling (arthritis) - usually bilateral, especially in the area of ​​the hocks, knee joints and elbow joints.

Another typical symptom of this sarcoidosis is an acute inflammation of the adipose tissue under the skin called erythema nodosum. These rough, reddish, warm and tender painful areas have a diameter of 1 to 10 cm and occur mainly on the lower legs. Later, they discolor like a bruised bruise.

These three symptoms ("trias") are usually accompanied by a strong sense of illness. Although they also occur in other diseases, but together are so characteristic that they should make the doctor think of acute sarcoidosis. In addition, common symptoms such as fatigue, poor performance and lack of concentration often occur.

Almost half of those affected suffer from nausea and stomach discomfort, tight chest and mild respiratory distress, and less commonly, coughing. These uncharacteristic symptoms can also precede the Triassic weeks to days, simulating a flu infection.

Symptoms of chronic sarcoidosis

Chronic sarcoidosis usually begins very slowly and asymptomatic or so unspecific that it goes unnoticed for a long time. Not infrequently it is a chance finding in a general examination. In addition to general symptoms such as decline in performance, symptoms occur depending on the affected organ. Below is a selection of common symptoms in chronic sarcoidosis:

  • Skin: Characteristic is the lupus pernio, characterized by swelling of the tip of the nose, more rarely the cheeks, usually the nasal mucosa and sometimes the nasal cartilage is affected by the inflammation. In addition, small-celled sarcoidosis occurs mainly on the forehead and oral region, the plaque-shaped and nodular sarcoidosis symmetrically on the legs and arms, and the usually small-celled scar-sarcoidosis in the area of ​​old scars.
  • Eyes: Inflammation of the eyes (uveitis) is particularly common, but the other structures in the eye, such as the choroid, conjunctiva, retina and lacrimal gland, may also be affected by sarcoidosis.
  • Heart: If granulomas form in the heart or the nerves there, it can lead to impaired conduction and arrhythmia - up to total heart failure - come.
  • Bones: If sarcoidosis occurs in the area of ​​bones, joints and tendons (especially on fingers and toes), this is also known as Morbus Jüngling. This form usually only appears after the chronic sarcoidosis has existed for several years.
  • Liver: Granulomas in the liver usually cause no discomfort and no functional impairment, but can alter the liver enzymes in the blood.
  • Nervous system: Neurosarcoidosis is most commonly seen as facial nerve paralysis, the paralysis of a facial nerve. But also paralysis or emotional disorders of other areas can occur. Headache, visual disturbances, gait disturbances or mental changes indicate involvement of the central nervous system.
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