Connective Tissue Diseases In Saginaw, MI
Your body’s structures are held together by connective tissue. If these connecting structures are affected, one is said to be suffering from a connective tissue disease.
Connective tissues are made of two proteins known as elastin and collagen. Collagen is the body’s most abundant protein and is found in tendons, ligaments, bones, skin, cartilage, and blood vessels. Elastin is a vital and highly elastic protein that allows body tissues to resume their shape after contracting or stretching.
Individuals who have connective tissue disease typically have inflamed collagen and elastin. When these proteins are inflamed, the body parts they support become compromised too.
MI Health Clinic is a reputable practice that offers custom-tailored care for individuals living with connective tissue diseases in Saginaw, MI. If you’re seeking relief from your symptoms, call us now to schedule a consultation with our doctors near you.
Types of Connective Tissue Diseases
There are over 200 forms of connective tissue disease. These include rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, scleroderma, Sjögren’s syndrome, vasculitis, Charg-Strauss syndrome, polymyositis/dermatomyositis, and mixed connective tissue disease, to mention a few.
Rheumatoid arthritis: An autoimmune condition whereby the body’s immune system attacks the thin membrane lining the joints, resulting in painful, stiff, and swollen joints.
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE): Lupus is an autoimmune disease characterized by inflammation of the skin, joints, and internal organs.
Scleroderma: This autoimmune condition causes scarring across the skin, blood vessels, and internal organs.
Sjögren’s syndrome: An autoimmune condition that is mainly characterized by dry mouth and dry eyes. It occurs when the body’s immune system attacks the moisture-producing glands of the eyes and mouth.
Connective tissue diseases may be inherited or triggered by environmental factors such as exposure to harsh chemicals. In addition, past viral and bacterial infections and poor nutrition can further make you more susceptible to connective tissue disease.
Symptoms of connective tissue diseases vary depending on the condition in question. Body parts that may be affected by the symptoms include the heart and blood vessels, skin, joints, bones, head, and face.
When to Seek Care
We encourage our patients to prioritize preventive health visits as these give our doctors a chance to catch any health problems while in their early stages. As a rule of thumb, a medical professional must check pain or discomfort that persists beyond a couple of days.
To diagnose a connective tissue disease, our doctors in Saginaw, MI, perform various tests, including imaging tests, blood tests, urine tests, tissue biopsy, tests for markers of inflammation, tests for antibodies, etc.
Our doctors recommend treatment based on the diagnosis at hand. Treatment may include medication, vitamin supplements, physical therapy, and lifestyle changes.
Contact MI Health Clinic today to learn more about connective tissue diseases near you.