Sarcoidosis

The Sarcoidosis Clinic at the UC San Diego Advanced Lung Disease Program is recognized by the Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research as a designated center for expertise in the treatment of sarcoidosis. Our program is led by a nationally recognized physician for his expertise in sarcoidosis.

What is Sarcoidosis?

Sarcoidosis is a non-infectious granulomatosis disease. Sarcoidosis is a relatively common interstitial lung condition that is often under-recognized, but can affect almost any organ in the body. Sarcoidosis most commonly affects the lungs, lymph nodes, skin, eyes and liver, but in some individuals it can also affect the kidneys, heart, bones, and the nervous system.

It is a result of an over-reactive immune system. Triggers attributed to the development of sarcoidosis in genetically susceptible individuals include bacteria chemicals or viruses. Some people develop sarcoidosis and have a spontaneous resolution a few months later. In others, symptoms develop and a short course f therapy improves the condition. In a third group, individuals with sarcoidosis will have a severe and chronic form. These individuals will require multiple therapies for a long time. Symptoms developed will depend on organ involvement.

Non-specific symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Night sweats
  • Fatigue

Symptoms related to the lung:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Wheezing
  • Chest pain
  • Recurring chest colds
  • Less exercise tolerance

Symptoms related to lymph nodes:

  • Enlarged lymph nodes in the neck, under the chin, in the groin or arm pits

Symptoms related to the eyes:

  • Burning
  • Itchiness
  • Redness
  • Pain
  • Dryness
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Seeing black spots (floaters)
  • Blurry vision

Symptoms related to the heart:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Palpitations
  • Leg swelling

Symptoms related to the nervous system:

  • Headache
  • Weakness
  • Visual disturbances
  • Numbness to the arms or legs
  • Facial palsy

Multidisciplinary Approach to Sarcoidosis

The UC San Diego Health Advanced Lung Disease Program offers patients with sarcoidosis both standard and cutting-edge investigational therapies. Standard treatment may require observation, immunosuppressive agents or biological agents.

Our clinical experts are actively involved in expanding horizons in the area of research for sarcoidosis. Some patients may be suitable candidates for clinical trials offered at UC San Diego Health.

Because sarcoidosis can cause various organ involvement and is potentially progressive in nature, we use a multidisciplinary approach to this condition. Our team partners with physicians and surgeons who have expertise in their respective specialties as they relate to sarcoidosis, including cardiologists, dermatologists, hepatologists, nephrologists, ophthalmologists, pathologists, neurologists and the heart/lung transplant teams.

In addition to medical care, patients will benefit from additional services provided to improve their health and empower them with the knowledge of sarcoidosis. These include:

  • Pulmonary rehabilitation to improve breathing techniques and functional status
  • Smoking cessation counseling
  • Nutritional education and services provided by registered dietitians

 

Appointments & Referrals

Pulmonary Medicine Locations

La Jolla

Related Specialists

Pulmonary Research & Clinical Trials

Our doctors are actively involved in clinical trials evaluating new therapies and tools for treating lung conditions. Learn more.