Autoimmune Diseases

Alopecia Areata (al-oh-PEE-shah air-ee-AH-tah)

A highly unpredictable skin disease resulting in the loss of hair on the scalp and elsewhere on the body. Learn more

Ankylosing Spondylitis (ank-kih-low-sing spon-dill-eye-tiss)

A disease causing inflammation of the spinal joints (vertebrae) that can lead to severe, chronic pain and discomfort. In the most advanced cases, this inflammation can lead to new bone formation on the spine, causing the spine to fuse in a fixed, immobile position, sometimes creating a forward-stooped posture (kyphosis). Learn more

Antiphospholipid Syndrome or Hughes Syndrome

A disorder characterized by excessive clotting of blood and/or certain complications of pregnancy (premature miscarriages, unexplained fetal death, or premature birth) and the presence of antiphospholipid antibodies in the blood. Learn more

Autoimmune Addison’s Disease

An endocrine or hormonal disorder that is characterized by weight loss, muscle weakness, fatigue, low blood pressure, and sometimes darkening of the skin in both exposed and nonexposed parts of the body. Addison’s disease occurs when the adrenal glands do not produce enough of the hormone cortisol and, in some cases, the hormone aldosterone. The disease is also called adrenal insufficiency, or hypocortisolism. Learn more

Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia

Autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA) is the clinical condition in which IgG antibodies bind to RBC surface antigens and initiate RBC destruction via the complement and reticuloendothelial system. AIHA is commonly treated with transfusions, corticosteroids, and splenectomy.

Autoimmune Hepatitis

Autoimmune hepatitis is a disease in which the body’s immune system attacks liver cells. This causes the liver to become inflamed (hepatitis).About 70 percent of those with autoimmune hepatitis are women, most between the ages of 15 and 40. Learn more

Bahcet’s Disease

A disease that results from damage to blood vessels throughout the body, particularly veins. Bahcet’s is most common in the Middle East, Asia, and Japan and tends to develop in people in their 20′s or 30′s. Learn more

Bullous Pemphigoid (BP)

A chronic, subepidermal, blistering skin disease that rarely involves mucous membranes. BP is characterized by the presence of immunoglobulin G (IgG) autoantibodies specific for the hemidesmosomal BP antigens BP230 (BPAg1) and BP180 (BPAg2). Learn more


A type of heart disease in which the heart muscle is abnormally enlarged, thickened and/or stiffened. As a result, the heart muscle’s ability to pump blood is usually impaired. When the heart muscle enlarges and is unable to pump effectively, its function declines. This is called congestive heart failure. Congestive heart failure results in a reduction in oxygen delivery to the tissues and a backup of fluid into those tissues. Congestive heart failure once carried a grim prognosis, but new advances in medical treatment have improved that prognosis significantly. Learn more

Celiac Sprue-Dermatitis (CD)

In people with CD, eating certain types of protein, called gluten, sets off an autoimmune response that causes damage to the small intestine. This, in turn, causes the small intestine to lose its ability to absorb the nutrients found in food, leading to malnutrition and a variety of other complications. Learn more

Chronic Fatigue Immune Disfunction Syndrome (CFIDS)

A complex disease that affects the brain and multiple body systems. CFIDS is also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or Myalgic Encephalomyelitis. Learn more

Cicatricial Pemphigoid

A neurological disorder characterized by progressive weakness and impaired sensory function in the legs and arms. The disorder, which is sometimes called chronic relapsing polyneuropathy, is caused by damage to the myelin sheath (the fatty covering that wraps around and protects nerve fibers) of the peripheral nerves. It often presents with symptoms that include tingling or numbness (beginning in the toes and fingers), weakness of the arms and legs, loss of deep tendon reflexes (areflexia), fatigue, and abnormal sensations. CIDP is closely related to Guillain-Barre syndrome and it is considered the chronic counterpart of that acute disease. Learn more

Cold Agglutinin Disease

Cold agglutinins are abnormal proteins in your blood. These proteins act as antibodies, causing your red blood cells to clump together and die prematurely — especially when your body is exposed to temperatures colder than normal body temperature. Most healthy people have a small number of cold agglutinins. Cold agglutinin disease occurs when you have high numbers of cold agglutinins. This can lead to a form of destructive (hemolytic) anemia, in which red blood cells are destroyed faster than bone marrow can replace them. Learn more

CREST Syndrome

Connective tissue is a kind of cellular glue — a material found outside your cells that supports and gives form to tissues and organs throughout your body. Specialized forms of connective tissue occur in your skin, bones, ligaments and tendons. Learn more

Crohn’s Disease

A chronic disorder that causes inflammation of the digestive or gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Although it can involve any area of the GI tract from the mouth to the anus, it most commonly affects the small intestine and/or colon. Learn more

Discoid Lupus

A skin disease characterized by inflammation and scarring type skin lesions which occur on the face, ears, scalp and at times on other body areas. These lesions develop as an inflamed growth with, scaling and a warty like appearance. The center areas may appear lighter in color surrounded by an area darker than the normal skin. When lesions occur in hairy areas such as the scalp, permanent scarring and hair loss can occur. Learn more

Essential Mixed Cryoglobulinemia

A medical condition that is caused by proteins called cryoglobulins present in the blood. Cryoglobulins are abnormal proteins that by definition have the unusual property of precipitating from the serum specimen in the laboratory when it is chilled and redissolving into the serum upon rewarming. Learn more


A condition that produces chronic pain of the soft tissues that may include the muscles, ligaments and tendons. It also may produce a number of other symptoms including temperature sensitivities; numbness and tingling that may travel throughout the body, fatigue, insomnia, concentration problems, gastric upset, headaches, joint discomfort and depression. Learn more

Graves Disease

The leading cause of hyperthyroidism, Graves’ disease represents a basic defect in the immune system, causing production of immunoglobulins (antibodies) which stimulate and attack the thyroid gland, causing growth of the gland and overproduction of thyroid hormone. Similar antibodies may also attack the tissues in the eye muscles and in the pretibial skin (the skin on the front of the lower leg). Learn more

Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis

A thyroid disease in which the immune system attacks and destroys the thyroid gland. The thyroid helps set the rate of metabolism – the rate at which the body uses energy. Hashimoto’s prevents the gland from producing enough thyroid hormones for the body to work correctly. It is the most common form of Hypothyroidism. Learn more

Idiopathic Thrombocytopenia Purpura

ITP is a blood disorder characterized by an abnormal decrease in the number of platelets in the blood. Platelets are cells in the blood that help stop bleeding. A decrease in platelets can result in easy bruising, bleeding gums, and internal bleeding. Learn more

Idiopathis Pulmonary Fibrosis

Pulmonary Fibrosis involves scarring of the lung. Gradually, the air sacs of the lungs become replaced by fibrotic tissue. When the scar forms, the tissue becomes thicker causing an irreversible loss of the tissue’s ability to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream. Learn more

IgA Nephropathy or Berger’s Disease

A chronic condition that develops gradually IgA nephropathy is the most common form of primary glomerulonephritis, a type of kidney disease that hinders your kidneys’ ability to remove waste and excess fluids. Learn more

Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy

This disease, also known as chronic relapsing polyneuropathy, occurs when the immune system mistakenly attacks peripheral nerves. The most common manifestation of this disease is a progressive weakness in the arms and legs. Learn more

Insulin Dependent Diabetes (Type 1)

A disease caused by a lack of insulin output because of damage to the pancreas gland. Learn more

Juvenile Arthritis

Also known as juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, or juvenile chronic arthritis is a condition that causes inflammation in one or more joints and begins before the age of 16. Though all have joint inflammation in common, they behave very differently and may require different treatment approaches. Learn more

Lichen Planus

A chronic disorder affecting skin, mouth or genitals; inflicting estimated 1.2 % of the world population. It is considered incurable by the conventional medicine. However, the good news is that it finds promising treatment with homeopathy. Learn more


A chronic inflammatory disease that can affect various parts of the body, especially the skin, joints, blood, and kidneys. With Lupus, the immune system loses its ability to tell the difference between foreign substances (antigens) and its own cells and tissues. The immune system then makes antibodies directed against “self.” These antibodies, called “auto-antibodies,” react with the “self” antigens to form immune complexes. The immune complexes build up in the tissues and can cause inflammation, injury to tissues, and pain. Learn more

Meniere’s Disease

A condition having the following four symptoms after thorough testing has determined no other cause. Fluctuating (episodic) hearing loss, Fluctuating (episodic) rotational vertigo (a form of dizziness), Fluctuating (episodic) tinnitus (a sound heard when there is no sound), Fluctuating (episodic) aural fullness (a sense of pressure in the middle ear, as if descending in an airplane). Ménière’s disease typically starts between the ages of 20 and 50 years. Men and women are affected in equal numbers. Learn more

Mixed Connect Tissue Disease

Diseases of connective tissue that are strictly inheritable include Marfan syndrome (can have tissue abnormalities in the heart, aorta, lungs, eyes, and skeleton), and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (may have loose, fragile skin or loose [hyperextensible] joints). Learn more

Multiple Sclerosis

An autoimmune disease that affects the central nervous system. Surrounding and protecting the nerve fibers of the CNS is a fatty tissue called myelin, which helps nerve fibers conduct electrical impulses. In MS, myelin is lost in multiple areas, leaving scar tissue called sclerosis. When myelin or the nerve fiber is destroyed or damaged, the ability of the nerves to conduct electrical impulses to and from the brain is disrupted, and this produces the various symptoms of MS. Learn more

Myasthenia Graves

A chronic autoimmune neuromuscular disease characterized by varying degrees of weakness of the skeletal (voluntary) muscles of the body. The hallmark of myasthenia gravis is muscle weakness that increases during periods of activity and improves after periods of rest. Myasthenia gravis is caused by a defect in the transmission of nerve impulses to muscles. Learn more

Pemphigus Vulgaris

Pemphigus involves blistering of the outer layer of the skin and mucous membranes. It is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system produces antibodies against specific proteins in the skin and mucous membrane. These antibodies produce a reaction that leads to a separation of epidermal cells. The exact cause of the development of antibodies against the body’s own tissues is unknown. Pemphigus is uncommon. About one-half of the cases of pemphigus vulgaris begin with blisters in the mouth, followed by skin blisters. The blisters are relatively asymptomatic, but the lesions become widespread and complications develop rapidly and may be debilitating or fatal. Learn more

Pernicious Anemia

Megaloblastic (pernicious) anemia is a rare disorder in which the body does not absorb enough vitamin B12 from the digestive tract, resulting in an inadequate amount of red blood cells (RBCs) produced. Megaloblastic (pernicious) anemia is more common in individuals of northern European descent. The inability to make intrinsic factor may be the result of chronic gastritis, or the result of a gastrectomy (removal of all or part of the stomach). Megaloblastic (pernicious) anemia may also be associated with type 1 diabetes, thyroid disease, and a family history of the disease. Learn more

Polyarteritis Nodosa

A rare autoimmune disease featuring spontaneous inflammation of the arteries. Because arteries are involved, the disease can affect any organ of the body. The most common areas of involvement include the muscles, joints, intestines (bowels), nerves, kidneys, and skin. Poor function or pain in any of these organs can be a symptom. Poor blood supply to the bowels can cause abdominal pain, local bowel death, and bleeding. Fatigue, weight loss, and fever are common. Its cause is unknown, but it has been reported after Hepatitis B infection. Learn more


A rare episodic and progressive multi-system inflammatory rheumatic disease involving all types of cartilage and connective tissue, which can be life-threatening, debilitating and can be difficult to diagnose. It was first described in 1923 and is characterized be recurrent, widespread and potentially severe and frightening episodes of inflammation of cartilaginous tissues, such as the ears, nose, larynx, trachea, bronchi and joints. In addition, it can affect proteoglycan rich tissues, such as the eyes, aorta, heart and skin. Learn more

Polyglandular Syndromes

With this disease, the immune system malfunctions and produces antibodies that attack healthy endocrine glands, which results in inflammation that destroys part or all of the gland. Frequently, after one gland is damaged, others also become damaged, causing many glands to slow or stop functioning. Learn more

Polymyalgia Rheumatica

The typical symptoms are aching and stiffness around the upper arms, neck, lower back and thighs. Symptoms tend to develop quickly, over a period of several days or weeks, and occasionally even overnight. Both sides of the body are affected. Learn more

Polymyositis & Dermatomyositis

A rare disease that involves inflammation that results in damage to muscle fibers and skin. Myositis is a term that describes several illnesses including Polymyositis, Dermatomyositis and Inclusion Body Myositis. Polymyositis involves inflammation of the muscles and can affect many parts of the body. When inflammation of skin involved it is called Dermatomyositis. Learn more

Primary Agammaglobulinemia

A group of inherited immune deficiencies characterized by insufficient antibodies. Antibodies are composed of certain proteins that are essential to the immune system. They are produced by specialized cells that circulate in the lymphatic fluid and blood. Antibodies fight off bacteria, viruses, and other foreign substances that threaten the body. There are three types of Primary Agammaglobulinemias and all are characterized by a weakened immune system that must be enhanced by gammaglobulin in order to fight infections. Learn more

Primary Biliary Cirrhosis

A chronic disease characterized by progressive inflammation and destruction of the small bile ducts within the liver. What are the bile ducts and what do they do? Lined with cells named biliary epithelial cells, the bile ducts are tubules that make up a plumbing system for the liver. The bile ducts along with the gallbladder are part of what is called the biliary tract. Learn more

Psoriasis (sore-EYE-ah-sis)

A noncontagious, lifelong skin disease. According to the National Institute of Health, as many as 7.5 million Americans have psoriasis. The most common form, plaque psoriasis, appears as raised, red patches or lesions covered with a silvery white buildup of dead skin cells, called scale. Learn more

Raynaud’s Phenomenon (ra-NODES fe-NOM-ah-non)

A condition in which poor blood flow results in discomfort and skin color changes in affected parts of the body. If left untreated or uncontrolled, it can affect fingers, toes, ears, nose, nipples and knees. There is no cure, but it can be controlled in most cases. Learn more

Reiter’s Syndrome (RYE-terz SIN-drome)

Produces pain, swelling, redness and heat in the joints. It is one of a family of arthritic disorders, called spondylarthropathies, affecting the spine and commonly involving the joints of the spine and sacroiliac joints. Main characteristic features are inflammation of the joints, urinary tract, eyes and ulceration of skin and mouth. Learn more

Rheumatic Fever (roo-MAT’ik)

A condition in which the heart valves are damaged by rheumatic fever. Rheumatic fever begins with a strep throat from streptococcal infection. Rheumatic fever is an inflammatory disease. It can affect many of the body’s connective tissues — especially those of the heart, joints, brain or skin. Anyone can get acute rheumatic fever, but it usually occurs in children five to 15 years old. Learn more

Rheumatoid Arthritis (rue-ma-TOYD arty-write-tis)

A chronic disease, mainly characterized by inflammation of the lining, or synovium, of the joints. It can lead to long-term joint damage, resulting in chronic pain, loss of function and disability. Learn more


A disease due to inflammation and characterized by the presence of granulomas, small areas of inflamed cells. They can be either inside the body or on the body’s exterior, appearing as sores on the face or shins. But sarcoidosis is most frequently found in the lungs. Learn more

Scleroderma (sclaire-row-DER-ma)

A disease that can cause thickening, hardening, or tightening of the skin, blood vessels and internal organs. Scleroderma is chronic, which means it can last a long time. Learn more

Sjogren’s Syndrome

An autoimmune disease that causes dry eyes and a dry mouth. In Sjogren’s the body’s defense system turns against itself and attacks glands that produce moisture. Learn more

Stiff-Man Syndrome

A rare disease of severe progressive muscle stiffness of the spine and lower extremities with superimposed muscle spasms triggered by external stimuli or emotional stress. Typically symptoms begin between the age of 30 and 50. Learn more

Takayasu’s Arteritis

A rare, chronic, inflammatory disease primarily of the aorta and its branches. Affects more females than males and usually begins in the 2nd or 3rd decade of life. Learn more

Temporal Arteritis/Giant Cell Arteritis

Also known as cranial arteritis, is a disorder that results in swelling of arteries in the head (most often the temporal arteries, which are located on the temples on each side of the head), neck, and arms. This swelling causes the arteries to narrow, reducing blood flow. Early treatment is critical for good prognosis. Learn more

Ulcerative Colitis

A chronic, recurring disease of the large bowel. The large bowel (colon) is the 5 to 6 foot segment of intestine that begins in the right-lower abdomen, extends upward and then across to the left side, and downward to the rectum. It dehydrates the liquid stool that enters it and stores the formed stool until a bowel movement occurs. Learn more


Inflammation inside the eye, specifically affecting one or more of the three parts of the eye that make up the uvea: the iris (the colored part of the eye), the ciliary body (behind the iris, responsible for manufacturing the fluid inside the eye), and the choroid (the vascular lining tissue underneath the retina). Uveitis is the THIRD leading cause of blindness in the United States, after diabetes and macular degeneration. Learn more


An inflammation of the blood vessels. Inflammation is a condition in which tissue is damaged by blood cells entering the tissues. In inflammatory diseases, these cells are mostly white blood cells. White blood cells circulate and serve as our major defense against infection. Ordinarily, white blood cells destroy bacteria and viruses. However, they can also damage normal tissue if they invade it. Learn more

Vitiligo (vit-ill-EYE-go)

A disorder in which white patches of skin appear on different parts of the body. This happens because the cells that make pigment (color) in the skin are destroyed. These cells are called melanocytes (ma-LAN-o-sites). Vitiligo can also affect the mucous membranes (such as the tissue inside the mouth and nose) and the eye. In vitiligo, the immune system may destroy the melanocytes in the skin. Learn more

Wegener’s Granulomatosis

An uncommon disease that affects about 1 in 20,000 to 1 in 30,000 people. Symptoms are due to inflammation that can affect many tissues in the body, including blood vessels (vasculitis). It is also considered a disease of abnormal immune function. It affects the upper (sinuses and nose), and lower (lungs), respiratory system and frequently involves the kidneys, lungs, eyes, ears, throat, skin and other body organs. Learn more