By Dr. Arif Yunus, Allergy/Immunology,
Primary Immunodeficiency Disease (PIDD) is mainly associated with the malfunctioning of the immune system. If a part of the immune system is not functioning properly, it can cause immune deficiency diseases. While there are different types of immune deficiency diseases, PIDD is usually genetic or present at birth. Thus, there is no known method of preventing this disease.
Primary immunodeficiency disease is typically diagnosed in children and infants. However, in certain cases, the signs of this disease may not appear until adulthood. Children and infants with PIDD have an extremely weak immune system. Their body has a very hard time in fighting against germs that cause illness. Such children might suffer from various infections in the skin, legs, ears and other areas of the body.
Symptoms of PIDD
Most cases of PIDD are seen in young children and babies. There are over 200 types of PIDD that affect different parts of an individual’s immune system. Every individual suffering from PIDD has a completely different experience. This means that the signs and symptoms of this disease differ from one person to another.
Medicines are the best solution for mild PIDD, but the more serious PIDD varieties are treated with doses of antibiotics for fighting infections. Children with PIDD might get several serious infections, or their illness might start out in the form of a common cold and turn into pneumonia or bronchitis.
Some of the symptoms of PIDD in children are:
- More than four infections every year in the lungs, ears, eyes, private parts, mouth and eyes.
- More than one serious and fast-moving sicknesses such as a bacterial infection or septicemia.
- Antibiotics do not work or produce good results.
- Suffers from thrush or a fungal infection in the mouth that does not go away under any circumstances.
- Suffers from pneumonia twice or thrice a year.
General Signs of PIDD
The specific forms of PIDD have signs and symptoms specific to the particular condition. However, in general, primary immunodeficiency disease is characterized by several infections that do not heal easily. Some of the signs and symptoms that are suggestive of PIDD include:
- Recurrent ear and sinus infections
- Hard-to-treat or frequent infections
- Enlarged spleen
- Inflamed lymph nodes
- Delayed growth
- Weight loss
- Irregular blood counts
- Recurrent abscesses in the internal organs
- Repeated skin abscesses
- Multiple doses of IV antibiotics or antibiotics needed for clearing infections
- Family history of primary immunodeficiency disease.
It is essential to treat the symptoms of Primary immunodeficiency disease before they get worse. Recognizing the symptoms of the disease and consulting a PIDD expert immediately is the best thing to do.