Friday, January 15, 2010

Glandular and Extraglandular Manifestations of Sjogren's Syndrome

As I continue to indulge my obsessive read everything about Sjogren's that I can put my eyeballs on habit, occasionally certain phrases make me stop briefly and think, "Huh?" Today's post title was one of those phrases. But with Google under my fingertips and Tabers on my bookshelf, all was quickly defined and clarified.

Here's what I learned. 

Sjogren's syndrome can create two types of symptoms, or manifestations: glandular and extraglandular. Many Sjoggies only develop glandular symptoms, but others like me are lucky enough to be blessed with both types of symptoms. 

Glandular symptoms arise due to lymphocytic damage in lacrimal, or tear-producing, glands; and salivary, or saliva - producing glands. In other words, lymphocytes, specific white blood cells, mistakenly identify normal tear and saliva producing tissue as not belonging to the body, and destroy those tissues. The result? 
  • Dry eyes
  • Dry mouth
  • Altered sense of taste and smell
  • Dry upper respiratory tract
  • Voice becomes hoarse after speaking 
  • Development of oral yeast infections, or candidiasis
  • Parototitis, or inflammation of the parotid salivary glands, and production of stones in the salivary glands
Extraglandular symptoms occur elsewhere in the body, and the list is extensive:
  • Skin 
  • Lungs
  • Gastro-intestinal tract
  • Pancreas
  • Liver
  • Heart
  • Neurological system
  • Kidneys
  • Joints
  • Reproductive system
  • Fatigue
  • Increased incidence of lymphoma
Each of these symptoms deserves an in-depth discussion. You can read more about glandular and extraglandular symptoms of Sjogren's syndrome here  and here

Excellent image above found on the Sjogren's Syndrome Foundation website.  


Anonymous said...

I have learn somethings. I'm, too, blessed with both symptoms.
I'm in a "I have to read all I can on Sjogren" phase too. And it seems this illness is far more complicated than I though first.

annie said...

I printed this pamphlet off the sjogren's site last year, when I was diagnosed with this illness. It's very helpful as a reference. For an illness that no one knows much about (including the doctors!), it is very complicated and very serious. I seem to fall like you do...I have most of the symptoms in each category. Thanks to people like you who have informative blogs and pertinent sjogren's sites, we have more info that any doctors can give us. Ultimately, patients are their own resources and learn to navigate how best to deal with their particular symptoms because they are the ones who are sick. Thanks again, Julia.

Jenny P said...

Yeah my symptoms cover quite a range too, though I'm blessed in the things that have not yet gone haywire. Speaking of reading due to SS ... this is a slightly different direction...a few years back I was looking for a book more on coping emotionally (I had already done a lot of educational reading, still do, and needed a morale boost). The only one I found that hit the spot was "But You Don't Look Sick" (not related in any way to the website and the 'spoon theory', though that is good too). Just a suggestion for anyone who might be interested:)

Joey E. said...

Well I was confirmed today I have SS, I failed the tear test, I have no tears, the dry mouth is the worst of worst, is there any partial control of the dry mouth? I am so tired of chewing gum I could scream, told by ENT to chew fruity gums and stay away from the mint types of gum as those can cause dry mouth, boy was he right, i wanted some so bad for the taste but it only lasted about 2 minutes in my mouth did not have enough saliva and was about to start choking my mouth and throat was so dry, this is really the pitts of a syndrome and the other places of dryness os horrible. I guess one just needs to read and learn how to maybe control it alittle. Are the any foods one should stay away from??

DaisyMay said...

Could sjogren's also be responsible for lymph node pain (and possible swelling) in the groin, underarm and down the sides of my neck?

My GP is baffled by these symptoms, I had an ultrasound on the largest nodes which they think looked normal. Going to see a rheumatologist for sjogren's at some point but have to wait for an apt. Just wondered if anyone could answer this question in the meantime.

Unknown said...

My very first symptoms involved my lungs.

@DaisyMay: I don't know if it's Sjogren's, but I also have swollen lymph nodes going down the sides of my neck. They are always a little swollen and sometimes a lot.

Anonymous said...

I have sjrogrens and the lymph nodes along the right side of my face, ear, jaw, and neck are all always swollen. It feels like there's heavy cotton balls inside there. It is painful at times. Ice packs work best at numbing the pain.