What is Sjogren's Syndrome?
Sjogren's Syndrome is a chronic, slowly progressive autoimmune disease that affects the "exocrine" (moisture producing) glands of the body. It is classified as a "connective tissue disease." Some other types of connective tissue diseases are: Lupus, Scleroderma, and Rheumatoid Arthritis. Ninety percent of those afflicted with SS are women. Sjogrens can accompany other autoimmune diseases, most frequently seen in conjunction with Rheumatoid Arthritis. When it is found with another connective tissue disease, it is called "secondary sjs."
Sjogren's Syndrome is classified as "primary sjs" when no other connective tissue disease is present. Sjogren's Syndrome causes dry eyes, dry mouth, and it can also affect other major organ systems. Uncommonly, it can affect the central nervous system.