What is an Autoimmune Disorder?
Simply put, an autoimmune disorder is any condition that results in the
body's immune system attacking and destroying healthy tissue. There
are a variety of reasons that people develop autoimmune disorders. Typically,
your body's immune system works by producing white blood cells to
attack and destroy harmful antigens in your body.
An antigen is any harmful substance, including bacteria, viruses, toxins,
cancer, harmful cells, unsafe blood transfusions, etc. The immune systems
keeps the body healthy by destroying these substances. If you have an
autoimmune disorder, your immune system can't tell the difference
between harmful substances and healthy ones. Instead of attacking dangerous
antigens, the body attacks healthy tissue.
Doctors are unable to determine what causes autoimmune disorders, exactly.
However, there is some evidence that harmful bacteria, viruses or certain
drugs may inhibit the body's ability to differentiate between normal,
healthy tissue and harmful substances like bacteria or a virus. To some
extent, doctors and scientists believe that autoimmune disorders are genetic.
Auto immune disorders have many adverse effects on the body. Not only is
healthy tissue attacked and destroyed, but organs may grow abnormalities
and change functions. Additionally, blood vessels, connective tissues,
joints, muscles, red blood cells and the skin may be affect. Autoimmune
disorders have the potential to affect all organs in the body.
Common Autoimmune Disorders
There are many types of autoimmune and autoimmune-related disorders. Some
of the most common are Systemic Lupus, Crohn's Disease, Rheumatoid
Arthritis, Scleroderma, Addison's disease, Celiac disease, Grave's
disease, Multiple Sclerosis, reactive arthritis, pernicious anemia and
type I diabetes. Additionally, a person can develop more than one autoimmune
disorder at a time. For example, if you have celiac disease (gluten intolerance),
you may develop pernicious anemia, too.
Autoimmune Disorders and Miscarriage
Learn More about Autoimmune Disease & Recurrent Pregnancy Loss Here
Evidence suggests that there may be a link between recurrent miscarriage,
unexplained infertility and autoimmune disorders. Statistically, women
with undiagnosed celiac disease are significantly more prone to miscarriage
than women without the disorder. One study concluded that there as a clear
gradation of risk of miscarriage in women with autoimmune disorders. Celiac
disease is one of the most common autoimmune disorders related to pregnancy loss.
Celiac disease occurs when the small intestine fails to absorb nutrients
from food. Individuals with celiac disease are gluten intolerant; if they
eat gluten, their small intestine may become damaged. Undiagnosed and
untreated cases of celiac disease often result in malnutrition. Additionally,
it may be very difficult for a woman with celiac disease to get pregnant.
If she does conceive, there is an increased risk of miscarriage unless
she pursues a gluten-free pregnancy.
Celiac and gluten miscarriages are preventable - but only if the condition
is diagnosed before pregnancy. If you have experienced multiple pregnancy
losses, you may be gluten intolerant or have another autoimmune disorder.
Many times, it is difficult for doctors to attribute miscarriages to gluten
intolerance or celiac disease until a pregnancy loss has already occurred.
Because of this, a woman could suffer multiple miscarriages before realizing
that she may be suffering from an autoimmune disorder.
Braverman IVF & Reproductive Immunology: We Can Help
If you have suffered multiple pregnancy losses or cannot conceive, contact
Braverman IVF & Reproductive Immunology today. We are devoted to helping
people like you fulfill their dream of having a baby and raising a family.
Suffering a miscarriage is heartbreaking; we understand. That's why
we're ready to help you understand your options. Dr. Braverman is
highly experienced and ready to give you the best reproductive immunology
assistance he can offer. If you've already suffered multiple miscarriages,
you probably feel hopeless and frustrated. Don't give up. Call our
office today and schedule a consultation to see what we can do for you.