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family with a lot of autoimmune diseases

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Old 04-15-2007, 11:08 AM   #1
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trouble222 HB User
Lightbulb family with a lot of autoimmune diseases

It may be me but it seems to me my family has a very high chance of getting autoimmune diseases. Do any of you notice that in your families? I think I was the first one to come down with a autoimmune disease, unless polio is one. thirty some years ago I came down with this very painful disease. I was never dx for sure but the doc was looking for polymyositis. I guess I had all the symptoms. A muscle biopsy was to have been taken when I had my gall bladder out but the two doctors didn't communicate so none was done. I was as now put on preds. It seemed to take it away. In the last 30 yrs. my sister got Scleromyexdema, my cousin has scleroderma. My niece got junvinile arthritis at the age of 18. My son was dx also with arthritis. The strange thing is with a lot of meds of different sort all of us, excluding my sister, went to remission. My sister passed from her disease. I am now being treated for polymyalgia rheumatica. Again with preds. The pain is different somewhat from the other poly. I'm quite sure if I dug futher i would find others with autoimmune diseases in this family.
I'm just curious if it follows in your families also.
any info would be helpful

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Old 05-07-2007, 12:36 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1,279
Re: family with a lot of autoimmune diseases

Yeah, I have Autoimmune thyroid diseases, so did my mum, God Bless her she died last year. Also my sister has thyroid, Lung diseases, Low B12 she need shots, and both my mum and sister have diabetics..... So I am scared that i am going to get another one, I think I already do!!

I have been feeling ill and in pain now for 2 years had lots of tests and get told that they are OK, my platelets are abnormal high, I have positive ANAs and abnormal RA factor... you take care... Mandy

Old 06-20-2007, 08:30 AM   #3
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cottonsocks HB User
Re: family with a lot of autoimmune diseases

Hi, Autoimmune disease is caused by a malfunction (at the molecular level) of the componants of the immune system, causing antibodies to be activated against self tissues. This is an autoimmune response to self, and it usually occurs in people who are genetically predisposed to this phenonoma. This can or not be hereditary, depending on the disease. Auto is Greek for self, so this autoimmune response now produces Autoantibodies. An autoimmune disease can be "triggered" by certain drugs, or as in Dermatitis Herpetiformis (skin condition) by gluten, but again only in a predisposed person.
A person may have two quite different autoimmune diseases themselves, or there may be other autoimmune diseases within the family, for eg. one may have Rheumatoid Arthritis, another diabetes, and another an autoimmune bullous (blistering)skin disease. On the other hand there may be no direct family member, even grandparents, with an autoimmune condition, but maybe some ancestor may have had one in the past. All however are genetically predisposed to having an autoimmune disease once triggered. These conditions are idiopathic (no known reason) but in those that are drug induced once the drug is removed the conditrion does not return.It is understanding how this malfunction occurs and in the production of these abnormal antibodies,being, (ie:= autoantibodies), which is still in research now. There are no cures,and diet has no affect on autoimmune disease itself, immunosuppressants are needed to suppress the autoantibody that has been activated. All that can be done is to control and suppress the production of these autoantibodies by taking immunosuppressants or steroids, which in themselves carry varying degrees in severity of symptoms and risks.
Autoimmune disease often has unexplained periods of remission, (I had a remission period of 18years!),and waxes and wanes in severity during any period of the disease being active.
I have an autoimmune blistering skin condition, LIGA Bullous Dermatosis)which has been active for the second time in my life, this time for the past 15 years, during which time it has totally blinded me. I had OOKP surgery 4 years ago to one "eye" which has resulted in restored vision to that eye, by using one of my teeth to support an optic prostethsis.

Last edited by cottonsocks; 06-20-2007 at 08:55 AM.

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