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What is Sjögren’s?

About Sjögren’s Disease

About Sjögren’s

Sjögren’s (pronounced SHOW-grins), also known as Sjögren’s Disease or Sjögren’s Syndrome, is a chronic, systemic, inflammatory autoimmune disease that usually attacks and damages the salivary, tear and mucous-secreting glands resulting in dry mouth, dry eyes, or even internal organ damage, arthritis, painful weak muscles, neuropathy, and debilitating fatigue.  

In 1933, Henrik Sjögren, a Swedish ophthalmologist, published his findings noting the connection amongst arthritis, fatigue, dry eyes, and dry mouth. This condition was later given his name and is now recognized as one of the most prevalent autoimmune diseases.

What you need to know about Sjögren’s

  • Nine out of ten Sjögren’s patients are women and the number of men being diagnosed is increasing.

  • The average age of onset is between 35 and 65 although it can occur in all ages including children.

  • Sjögren’s affects approximately 1% of the population but is often undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.

  • Sjögren's is a systemic disease and is not limited to dryness. It can impact every organ and system in the body.

  • Sjögren’s is an autoimmune disease caused by the immune system attacking its own body tissues, which in the case of Sjögren’s, damages the glands that produce moisture throughout the body.

  • Sjögren’s is caused by a combination of genetic, hormonal, and environmental factors. More research is needed about how the disease is triggered.

  • Sjögren’s is a progressive disease, but patients can also experience fluctuations and flares of their symptoms.

  • No two Sjögren’s patients are the same in terms of their symptoms, signs, and complications. Some people experience mild discomfort while others suffer debilitating symptoms.