Treatment of Behcets Disease
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Behcet`s disease is an inflammatory process, which can develop in various parts of the body. It can affect arteries, veins, brain, in some cases joints and, rarely, skin. Most commonly, Behcet`s disease manifests itself as ulcers, which can develop in the mouth, on the genitals and other parts of the body. Although the exact cause of Behcet`s disease is still unknown, adverse environmental factors and genetic predisposition are considered to play the leading role. Also, Behcet`s disease is more common among Asians than people of European descent, the cause of that is not known as well. The symptoms of Behcet's disease depend on the area of the body it affected. Ulcers, which appear in the mouth or in the genitals, are most commonly multiple and they recur in crops, meaning that there are many shallow ulcers developing simultaneously. Usually, they are not located far away from each other with approximately 20 mm of distance between them. If ulcer develops in the mouth, gums and tongue are the most common places, where the ulceration develops. If ulceration develops on the genitals, scrotum in the men and vulva in women are the most common places where ulcers develop. Most commonly, they are quite painful. In rare cases, Behcet`s disease manifests itself as eye inflammation, which affects the front of the eye. The most dangerous manifestation of Behcet`s disease is inflammation of the arteries, as it can lead to insufficient blood supply of certain organs. The most dangerous complication of artery inflammation is stroke. If inflammation develops in the joints, a person may develop arthritis as well and feel certain stiffness and joint pain. Rarely, inflammation develops in the brain and mostly affects the meninges.
- Joint pain and stiffness if Behcet`s disease affected joints
- Headaches if Behcet`s disease affected the brain
- Blurred vision and eye pain if Behcet`s disease affected eyes
- During a general examination a doctor will examine the skin of a patient for the signs of ulceration. Combined with joint stiffness or eye pain or headaches, this ulceration can be an indicator of Behcet`s disease.
- MRI and CT scan are used if there is a suspicion that Behcet`s disease affected the meninges or arteries. In this case, different organs are inspected to make sure they were not damaged as the result of inflammation.
- Pathergy test is used to determine if a person has Behcet`s disease by using sterile needle, which pricks the skin. If after some time it leaves red nodule or in some cases pustule, a patient is diagnosed with Behcet`s disease.
- Conservative treatment depends on the areas of the body which were affected by Behcet`s disease. Ulceration is most commonly treated by special gels and corticosteroid creams to alleviate the pain. Special anti-inflammatory drugs are used to reduce the stiffness and pain in the joints. Eye inflammation is treated by special drops that alleviate the pain and reduce the inflammation. In some cases immunosuppressants are prescribed to reduce the activity of immune system, as this disease is most likely to be autoimmune. Although there is no definite cure for Behcet`s disease, symptoms can be alleviated so that a person feels considerably better.