What is Sarcoidosis?
Sarcoidosis is a collection of symptoms used to describe an auto-immune disorder that creates inflammation. It leads to skin, joint, lung and kidney problems. Sarcoidosis creates inflamed areas that show up in the body called granulomas. These typically show up in the lymph nodes, lungs and on the skin. There is no agreed upon cause of Sarcoidosis and there is no definitive cure. Many times, Sarcoidosis is not life threatening but it can be and can cause severe organ and tissue damage that may result in long term disability and health complaints. Extreme examples of untreated Sarcoidosis have led to organ failure and a need for organ transplants.
Early Signs and Symptoms:
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Weight loss
- Lung Symptoms
- Persistent dry cough
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Rash: Discolored and inflamed bumps that typically appear on the lower legs. These are often warm and sensitive to touch and pressure.
- Lesions: Sores that tend to be disfiguring which often appear on the face.
- Color change: Skin pigmentation that varies across the body
- Nodules or Lipomas: Often appear with Sarcoidosis and typically are benign. Often form around body art such as tattoos, scaring or piercings.
- Blurred vision
- Extreme redness
- Sensitivity to light
Ethnicity: African Americans have a higher percentage of Sarcoidosis than do members of any other ethnic group.
Age: Typically develops between the ages of 20 and 40
Genetics and Geography: While unconfirmed, a family history of the disorder raises risk and geographically, while African Americans have higher rates than other Americans, there are also high rates in Scandinavia, Ireland and Puerto Rico.
Typical medical treatments from mainstream medicine consist of:
Corticosteroids: Corticosteroids are anti-inflammatory drugs which are delivered via a cream for skin lesions or with an inhaler for the lungs.
Anti-rejection medications: These medications are used to suppress immune responses in severe cases.
Anti-malarial medications: Have a beneficial effect on skin disease, nervous system impairment and elevated blood-calcium levels which often accompany the disorder.
Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) inhibitors: Typically used to treat the inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis they have also been demonstrated to effective in dealing with forms of the disorder which are resistant to other interventions.
In many cases, Sarcoidosis resolves itself which is one of the reasons it is difficult to diagnose and treat. Get checked for food allergies as this may be a casual or contributing factor. Be aware of molds and mildew in your environment as these common natural phenomena may also present complications. Due to the absence of mainstream and alternative research consensus, while there are no studies that specifically link a natural medicine, herb or supplement to an effective treatment for Sarcoidosis, diet and lifestyle changes may be the missing link. For this reason, consider lifestyle and dietary changes first. Lifestyle change takes time and even the most intense intervention can take at least six weeks to begin to show benefits and health improvement; after that consider herbal supplements and other alternative remedies.
Alternative Treatments for Sarcoidosis
Curcumin or Tumeric: 2 capsules three times daily or alternatively three cups of tea.
Kachnaar guggul: 2 tablets or capsules three times daily
Kishore Guggul: 2 tablets 3 times daily
Natural Enzymes: These vary according to the Naturopath you consult with. They are believed to break down granulomas thru natural interaction via metabolism and body chemistry. Consult with a Naturopath to determine what enzyme may be right for you.
Red Clover Tea: Said to cleanse the blood. 2 to 3 cups daily should be taken. If using tincture, consult your Naturopathic health provider for suggested dosage information.
Metabolically centered testing: This is the testing method most popular with alternative medicine providers to determine how to treat sarcoidosis naturally. Seek a Licensed provider for alternative medicine to explore this option.