Autoimmune Specialist

Sienna Wellness Institute

Podiatrists & Internists located in Lake Isabella, CA

When your immune system doesn’t function properly, it attacks your body’s own normal, healthy cells, causing disease or infection. At Sienna Wellness Institute & Sienna Podiatry in Lake Isabella, California, the team of doctors at Sienna Wellness diagnos and treat autoimmune diseases that can wreak havoc on your body. To find out more about autoimmune diseases and how you can benefit from treatment, call or schedule an appointment online today.

Autoimmune Q & A

What is autoimmune disease?

Autoimmune disease refers to health conditions in which your immune system mistakenly attacks your body’s healthy cells. When it works properly, your immune system helps prevent bacteria and viruses from causing disease or infection by dispersing cells to attack harmful germs.

If you have an autoimmune disease, your immune system releases antibodies (a type of protein) that attack healthy cells, and confuses joints and skin as foreign entities. Some autoimmune diseases affect just one organ, while others affect your entire body. There are over 80 different forms of autoimmune disease, some of the most common being:

  • Diabetes
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Lupus
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

What are common symptoms of autoimmune disease?

Although there are many different types of autoimmune disease, early signs and symptoms are often the same, such as:

  • Aching muscles
  • Fatigue
  • Hair loss
  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Fever
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Numbness and tingling in your hands and feet
  • Skin Rashes

However, specific autoimmune diseases can result in different symptoms. For example, diabetes patients may experience excessive thirst or frequent urination.

How do you diagnose autoimmune disease?

There are over 80 different types of autoimmune disease, so getting a diagnosis from a professional is critical in developing a comprehensive treatment plan. Unfortunately, there isn’t a single test that can diagnose most autoimmune diseases. Dr. Spohn-Gross uses a combination of evaluating your symptoms and testing to diagnose you.

One test that’s commonly used is called the antinuclear antibody test (ANA). A positive test result means you have an autoimmune disease, but it may not necessarily confirm which one.

Other testing procedures she may recommend, such as blood tests, help detect specific antibodies in your body that are produced when certain autoimmune diseases are present. Tests for inflammation associated with certain autoimmune diseases are also common.

How do you manage and treat autoimmune disease?

Treatments don’t cure autoimmune disease, but Dr. Spohn-Gross can help provide pain relief and bring down inflammation from an overactive immune response. She often prescribes nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) and naproxen (Naprosyn), as well as immune-suppressing drugs.

Treatments are also available to alleviate symptoms like swelling, fatigue, and skin rashes. Dr. Spohn-Gross also works with you to develop a well-balanced diet and regular exercise plan, both of which can drastically improve your condition and any symptoms.

If you notice any symptoms of autoimmune disease, call or schedule an appointment online today.

Conditions & Treatments