Bechet's disease

Bechet’s disease is an autoimmune disease that results from damage to blood vessels throughout the body, particularly veins. In an autoimmune disease, the immune system attacks and harms the body’s own tissues. It is also called Adamantiades.

Causes?

The exact cause is unknown. It is believed that an autoimmune reaction may cause blood vessels to become inflamed, but it is not clear what triggers this reaction.

Signs and symptoms

Bechet’s disease affects each person differently. The most common symptoms are:

  • Mouth sores.
    • Painful mouth sores that look similar to canker sores are the most common sign of Behcet’s disease. The sores take a while to heal, usually one to three weeks.
  • Skin issues
    • Acne-like sores on their bodies as well as red, raised and tender nodules on the skin of the lower legs.
  • Genital sores
    • The red, open sores commonly occur on the scrotum or the vulva. The sores are usually painful and may leave scars.
  • Inflammation of the eyes
    • Unexplained redness, pain and blurred vision in one or both eyes. It often mays come and goes without warning.
  • Joint pain and swelling
    • The knees are the most common joints affected.  The ankles, elbows or wrists also may become swollen. Swelling usually lasts one to three weeks.
  • Inflammation of veins and arteries
    • This is characterized by redness, pain, and swelling in the arms or legs when a blood clot results. Complications include aneurysms and narrowing or blockage of the vein or artery.
  • Digestive system pain
    •  Abdominal pain, diarrhea and bleeding.
  • Brain.
    • Inflammation in the brain and nervous system that characterized by headache, fever, disorientation, poor balance or stroke.

Treatment options?

There is no cure for Bechet’s disease. Treatment typically focuses on reducing discomfort and preventing serious complications. Mouthwash may provide relief from mouth sores and eyedrops can provide relief for dry or inflamed eyes. Corticosteroids and other medications that suppress the immune system may be prescribed to treat inflammation.

What is the prognosis for someone with Bechet’s disease?

Bechet’s is a chronic disease that never completely goes away. However, patients may have periods of time when symptoms go away temporarily (remission).

The severity of Bechet’s disease varies from patient to patient. Some patients may live normal lives, but others may become blind or severely disabled. A person who is severely disabled may qualify for social security benefits.