Our immune system is responsible for producing antibodies and the required defense mechanisms to ward off bacteria, viruses, cancer cells, and other foreign bodies. A person suffering from immunodeficiency is more prone to catch infections and other diseases as compared to a normal, healthy person.

Dr. Kia has over ten years of experience in dealing with conditions related to the immune system and autoimmune disease testing. You can approach him for the right course of treatment in case you suffer from immunodeficiency.

WHAT CAUSES IMMUNODEFICIENCY?

Immunodeficiency can be caused by a variety of factors ranging from malnutrition to genetic predispositions.

Malnutrition
One of the most common causes of immunodeficiency is malnutrition. The body requires a certain intake of vitamins, minerals, and proteins to enable the defense mechanisms of the immune system. Malnutrition deprives the immune system of its ability to fight against infections.

Chemotherapy, radiation
When patients suffer from conditions like cancer, strong doses of chemotherapy and radiation are required to completely remove cancer cells. These treatments can cause immunodeficiency as a side effect and leave the patient more susceptible to infections and a number of other diseases.

Genetic factors
Some cases of immunodeficiency are caused by a discrepancy in a person’s genes. For some people, the trait of immunodeficiency might be passed down to generations. In such cases, an aggressive reaction like those caused by chemotherapy can trigger weakened immune responses from the body.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF IMMUNODEFICIENCY?

With immunodeficiency, there is no knowing when symptoms can present themselves. People with a genetic predisposition to immunodeficiency sometimes go for many years without presenting any symptoms. For others, symptoms may present themselves at the time of birth.

In either case, there are some symptoms which, if noticed, should be checked out immediately. Dr. Kia, with his vast experience in immunology, will review your medical history, past medical conditions, current symptoms, and then recommend the required tests to determine whether your symptoms are definitive of immunodeficiency.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF IMMUNODEFICIENCY?

With immunodeficiency, there is no knowing when symptoms can present themselves. People with a genetic predisposition to immunodeficiency sometimes go for many years without presenting any symptoms. For others, symptoms may present themselves at the time of birth.

In either case, there are some symptoms which, if noticed, should be checked out immediately. Dr. Kia, with his vast experience in immunology, will review your medical history, past medical conditions, current symptoms, and then recommend the required tests to determine whether your symptoms are definitive of immunodeficiency.

MENTIONED BELOW ARE SOME OF THE SYMPTOMS YOU SHOULD LOOK OUT FOR

Recurring infections
Infections like sinusitis, ear infections, bronchitis, and others do affect a person at some point in their lives. However, if you notice that you are prone to these infections at an alarming frequency or if you do not respond to any treatments, you should immediately pay a visit to your doctor as these could be symptomatic of immunodeficiency.

Low platelet counts
If your routine blood tests show a decrease in platelet counts, it is recommended that you visit your doctor. This is because platelets are what is responsible for clotting in our body, and in many cases, a low platelet count is indicative of an autoimmune disease or a condition in which the immune system attacks healthy cells and tissues.

Nausea and diarrhea
Both of these conditions can occur due to a variety of conditions like food poisoning, irritable bowel syndrome, indigestion, and so on. Even so, persistent nausea and diarrhea should be reported to your doctor as it may or may not be indicative of a weakened immune system.

Stunted development
If your child is not showing normal growth or development, it could be a symptom of an underlying condition. However, some children are late bloomers. Either way, it is always better to show your child to a doctor just to be on the safer side.

DIAGNOSING AND TREATING IMMUNODEFICIENCY

Proper diagnosis of immunodeficiency will help doctors to treat and manage the condition before it leads to any other dire conditions.

Diagnosis starts with a very detailed review of the patient’s medical history and current symptoms. Based on the conclusion obtained from the review, your doctor will recommend a physical examination followed by a blood test to check for any possible discrepancies with your blood work.

These blood tests will determine the level of antibodies in your body. An increased level of certain proteins can indicate that something is not right with your immune system. In many cases, doctors often recommend prenatal testing to see whether a fetus has immunodeficiency. This is highly beneficial because treatment can be started from within the womb so that the fetus is less susceptible to infections after being born.

When it comes to treatment, certain immunodeficiency disorders like AIDS cannot be completely treated as there is no cure for this condition as of now. Doctors prescribe medications that help patients manage the symptoms of AIDS. For less severe disorders, doctors may recommend long-term medications such as antibiotics in order to prevent infections.