Does it seem like autoimmune diseases are on the rise?

Posted by Becky, Volunteer Mentor @becsbuddy, Aug 12, 2021

I read an excellent article in AARP Magazine. “The Rising Toll of Autoimmune Diseases in Older People” https://www.aarp.org/health/conditions-treatments/info-2021/autoimmune-diseases-rising.html. It talks about why AD are on the rise and why the elderly are especially vulnerable. Excellent article!

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Autoimmune Diseases group.

It certainly seems to make sense. And as we age, our defenses naturally decrease, opening us up to more chance of an autoimmune issue. I will be curious to read others' responses to the article!
Ginger

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Awesome article. Thanks for sharing

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Here is another excellent article about women and autoimmune diseases. This was from The Atlantic Magazine. Very interesting
https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2019/06/women-autoimmune-diseases-pregnancy/591901/
What do you think?

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@becsbuddy

Here is another excellent article about women and autoimmune diseases. This was from The Atlantic Magazine. Very interesting
https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2019/06/women-autoimmune-diseases-pregnancy/591901/
What do you think?

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@becsbuddy Seeing this article was published in 2019, I have to wonder if research was ongoing, and what other information they have to update the findings?

I never had children, and have multiple autoimmune conditions. One sister has not had children, but does not suffer with any autoimmune concerns. So, it's difficult for me to understand the findings. I think there may be more at play here.
Ginger

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Thank you Becky for posting both of the articles. The AARP one I’m sending around to my friends who just find my autoimmune diseases weird. Which they are, but it’s a good easy read to shed some light. I’d heard the theories about the relationship to the numerous chemicals we use and to our diets before. Both of which to me seems plausible.

The diet theory also relates to another I’ve heard, that autoimmune diseases are on the rise due to our increasingly degenerating stomach biomes. In my youth I had issues with systemic candida and I’ve had giardiasis several times, which I’ve read can be a trigger to Primary Biliary Cholangitis. I only manifested Sjogren’s Syndrome, however, after my liver transplant. The hormonal relationship has been purported a lot, but the pregnancy theory I hadn’t heard. Interesting though.

I’m just hopeful that more doctors become aware of the rise in autoimmune diseases and start thinking out of the box when it comes to diagnosing symptoms that are persistent, but maybe not seemingly connected. And, then send patients to get labs which can identify common autoimmune disease markers. If my primary had done so I could have been easily diagnosed with PBC before I came down with stage 3 liver cirrhosis and had my happy life pretty much destroyed and forever changed for the worse.

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Another interesting article – apologies, I guess you can only open it in Apple News or Scientific American

THE BODY AGAINST ITSELF
AUTOIMMUNE DISEASE, BY THE NUMBERS
About 80 conditions can be described as autoimmune disorders, although definitions are still changing
https://apple.news/AE2rNeN8_T0Kxwe2jfTw_4A

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@gingerw

@becsbuddy Seeing this article was published in 2019, I have to wonder if research was ongoing, and what other information they have to update the findings?

I never had children, and have multiple autoimmune conditions. One sister has not had children, but does not suffer with any autoimmune concerns. So, it's difficult for me to understand the findings. I think there may be more at play here.
Ginger

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Hi, Ginger! I, too, wonder if the research is ongoing. I haven’t found anything more current, but ill keep trying.

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@athenalee

Another interesting article – apologies, I guess you can only open it in Apple News or Scientific American

THE BODY AGAINST ITSELF
AUTOIMMUNE DISEASE, BY THE NUMBERS
About 80 conditions can be described as autoimmune disorders, although definitions are still changing
https://apple.news/AE2rNeN8_T0Kxwe2jfTw_4A

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@athenalee Thanks for the article! I was able to read it. :-). Very interesting!

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@athenalee

Thank you Becky for posting both of the articles. The AARP one I’m sending around to my friends who just find my autoimmune diseases weird. Which they are, but it’s a good easy read to shed some light. I’d heard the theories about the relationship to the numerous chemicals we use and to our diets before. Both of which to me seems plausible.

The diet theory also relates to another I’ve heard, that autoimmune diseases are on the rise due to our increasingly degenerating stomach biomes. In my youth I had issues with systemic candida and I’ve had giardiasis several times, which I’ve read can be a trigger to Primary Biliary Cholangitis. I only manifested Sjogren’s Syndrome, however, after my liver transplant. The hormonal relationship has been purported a lot, but the pregnancy theory I hadn’t heard. Interesting though.

I’m just hopeful that more doctors become aware of the rise in autoimmune diseases and start thinking out of the box when it comes to diagnosing symptoms that are persistent, but maybe not seemingly connected. And, then send patients to get labs which can identify common autoimmune disease markers. If my primary had done so I could have been easily diagnosed with PBC before I came down with stage 3 liver cirrhosis and had my happy life pretty much destroyed and forever changed for the worse.

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Hi @athenalee In case you never saw this discussion, it mentions a book/article written by a woman to explain her AD to her friends. The author is so good! I hope you’ll like it!
https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/how-do-you-plan-your-day-and-conserve-energy-are-you-a-spoonie/
Have you talked with your friend yet?

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@gingerw

It certainly seems to make sense. And as we age, our defenses naturally decrease, opening us up to more chance of an autoimmune issue. I will be curious to read others' responses to the article!
Ginger

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It sure appears that it is. My husband died, June 1, 2019, from crohns disease. The medical field has no idea what causes CD. I am thinking it can be fueled by your environment. However, I miss my husband, I wish crohns disease had a cure.

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@4200wishyouwerehere

It sure appears that it is. My husband died, June 1, 2019, from crohns disease. The medical field has no idea what causes CD. I am thinking it can be fueled by your environment. However, I miss my husband, I wish crohns disease had a cure.

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@4200wishyouwerehere. I’m so sorry to hear this. Yes, autoimmune diseases can be devastating to everyone. There are also called the invisible disease because know one knows about the, including doctors. There is lots of research happening, but treatments and cures will probably never happen in our lifetimes.
Please accept my condolences and tell others to come here if they need help.

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@becsbuddy

Hi @athenalee In case you never saw this discussion, it mentions a book/article written by a woman to explain her AD to her friends. The author is so good! I hope you’ll like it!
https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/how-do-you-plan-your-day-and-conserve-energy-are-you-a-spoonie/
Have you talked with your friend yet?

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Thank you @becsbuddy. Some good tips. The title of the website is so appropriate for people with autoimmune diseases. I get pretty tired of people telling me how good I look! I know they mean it in a nice way, but sometimes I just want to respond, “thanks, but I feel miserable and in constant pain, with numb tingling extremities, a sore throat I’ve had for months, fatigued, etc.!

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