Severe Combined Immune Deficiency

Severe combined immune deficiency is otherwise called SCID. It comes under a group of inherited disorders. SCID is caused by abnormalities in B and T cells. Apart from these the SCID is also related to genetic abnormalities. The severe combined immune deficiency is linked to the X chromosome.

Interleukin (IL)-2 a molecule is necessary for the T cells to communicate with the B cells. Persons with severe combined immune deficiency would be lacking this molecule. SCID may also be caused by the lack of an enzyme called the adenosine deaminase (ADA). We will look at the symptoms of severe combined immune deficiency. The symptoms of this deficiency are said to appear during the first three months in the babies.

The symptoms of SCID would be pneumonia, meningitis, and sepsis. Infections like chickenpox, measles, or cold sores can weaken the immune system. Babies with severe combined immune deficiency can have chronic skin infections, candida (yeast) infections in the mouth and diaper area. Chronic hepatitis, diarrhea, and blood disorders are also among the symptoms of severe combined immune deficiency.

Patients with severe combined immune deficiency will have very low levels of IgG, IgA, and IgM antibodies. A doctor has to diagnose the functioning of the immune system frequently with several tests. The most effective treatment for severe combined immune deficiency is the transplantation of the bone marrow from a healthy brother or sister of the patient. A donor who closely matches the patient can also be used. Intravenous immunoglobulin is given until the transplant takes effect.


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