Sjögren’s Syndrome: a literature review

  • César Ricardo Coimbra de Matos Universidade Católica Portuguesa
  • Maria do Rosário Carvalho Martins
Keywords: Sjögren’s Syndrome, xerostomia, manifestations, diagnosis, treatment

Abstract

Sjögren’s Syndrome (SS) is a chronic inflammatory systemic disease. It is auto-immune in nature and likely has a multifactorial etiology. This disease is characterized by lymphocytic infiltration of the exocrine glands, particularly the salivary and lacrimal glands. The disease causes dysfunction and structural damage leading to the classic SS symptoms of xerophthalmia and xerostomia. No clinical findings or immunological markers have yet been accepted as defining a diagnosis of SS or to identify periods of disease activity and remission. It is important that a patient suspected to have SS is evaluated by multidisciplinary teams consisting of ophthalmologists, rheumatologists, otolaryngologists and dentists, among other professionals. Among the clinical manifestations of SS is a notable reduction in salivary flow. Therefore, it is essential that the dentist knows the clinical characteristics, diagnostic methods and treatments for SS. Patients should be properly guided, and preventive measures must be introduced in order to prevent tissue damage, which may arise due to the decrease in salivary flow. This disease affects the individual not only physically but also emotionally and socially, and dentists and health professionals in general must diagnose the disease and apply a therapy in order to provide the best quality of life for their patients.

Author Biographies

César Ricardo Coimbra de Matos, Universidade Católica Portuguesa
Masters Program in Sports Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
Maria do Rosário Carvalho Martins
Masters Integrated in Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal
Published
2009-09-07
Section
Literature Review