Your immune system is your first line of defense against germs like bacteria, viruses and fungus. These germs are fought off by your specialized immune cells and organs, like the spleen. An abnormal immune system can lead to diseases like asthma, allergies, autoimmune disorders or general immune deficiencies.
Symptoms of your immune deficiency can be in any body part. Infections may occur repeatedly in your skin or lungs, throat or ears, urinary tract, or intestines, or even your brain and spine. Common presentations are repeated infections, often with bugs that are normally not harmful to those without immune deficiencies. The good news? Many patients with immune deficiency can lead full lives with our expert medical care.
Symptoms of Immune Deficiency:
- Lungs (pneumonia or bronchitis)
- Urinary tract
- Brain and spine (meningitis)
- Low platelet count
- Delayed growth and development
- Autoimmune disorders like lupus or type 1 diabetes
Causes of Immune Deficiency:
Immune deficiencies lower your resistance to infections. Your immune system may be impaired by illness or suppressed by medications like prednisone (corticosteroids). Some immune deficiencies are present from birth and genetic in nature. These deficiencies are called primary immune deficiencies and affect about 500,000 American.
Treatment Options for Immune Deficiency:
- Lifestyle modifications:
- Eat a healthier diet
- Improve your sleep
- Decreasing your stress
- Good hand washing and hygiene
- Take care of your teeth
- Avoid sick people
- Preventative antibiotics, especially in kids who can’t take live vaccines
- Rotating appropriate antibiotics for your frequent infections
- Treating your symptoms with pain and fever drugs, decongestants, etc.
- Advanced medications:
- Replacement immunoglobulin therapy – These drugs contain antibodies needed to fight your infections