World Sjögren's Day was created to commemorate the birthday of Dr. Henrik Sjögren, the Swedish ophthalmologist who discovered Sjögren's in 1933, which has helped all patients find answers to their health questions.
This July 23rd, the Sjögren's Syndrome Foundation, SSF, will join with other Sjögren's organizations around the world to celebrate the 7th annual World Sjögren's Day and what would have been Dr. Sjögren's 117th birthday.
World Sjögren's Day also allows us to recognize advancements made in Sjögren's this past year and the incredible progress the SSF has made on behalf of Sjögren's patients. This includes our current development of Clinical Practice Guidelines for Sjögren’s that will help standardize patient care by giving physicians a roadmap of how to treat, monitor and manage their patients with the disease.
Sjögren’s (pronounced SHOW-grins) is a chronic autoimmune inflammatory disease in which people’s white blood cells attack their moisture-producing glands. Four primary symptoms include fatigue, joint pain, dry eye and dry mouth, but Sjögren’s may also cause dysfunction of other organs such as the kidneys, gastrointestinal system, blood vessels, lungs, liver, pancreas, and the central nervous system.
With upwards of 4,000,000 Americans suffering from Sjögren’s, it is one of the most prevalent but less known autoimmune disorders. This is because Sjögren’s is not a “cookie-cutter” disease, often being overlooked or misdiagnosed since symptoms can manifest in various ways and affect every patient differently.
Currently, there is no cure for Sjögren’s but an early diagnosis and proper treatment are important for preventing the more serious complications of the disease while also helping to improve a patient’s quality of life. On average, it takes 3 years from the time a patient seeks treatment for their symptoms to receiving a formal diagnosis. This is why in 2012 the SSF launched a BOLD 5-Year Breakthrough Goal: “To shorten the time to diagnose Sjögren’s by 50% in 5 years!”
How Can You Help Make A Difference?
Use this opportunity to help raise awareness for this little known but very common disease by printing out an SSF fact sheet and share it with your friends, family, neighbors, work colleagues and local community: Click Here for SSF Fact Sheet