Sjogren's syndrome - Complications 

Complications of Sjogren's syndrome 

Sjogren's syndrome is not often life-threatening, but it is linked to more serious problems.

Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

It is estimated that people with Sjogren's syndrome are 44 times more likely to develop non-Hodgkin's lymphoma than people without Sjogren's syndrome.

Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is a series of vessels and glands (lymph nodes) that are spread throughout your body, much like your blood vessels.

While this increased risk may sound alarming, the chance of a person with Sjogren’s syndrome developing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is still small, as it only affects about 5% of patients.

If you have Sjogren’s syndrome, be alert for the main early symptom of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma – a painless swelling in a lymph node (gland), usually in the neck, armpit or groin. Report any swollen lymph nodes to your GP.

Read more about non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Eye damage

If dry eyes are not treated, they can become infected and develop ulcers on the surface of the eyes, called corneal ulcers.

If left untreated, corneal ulcers can lead to loss of vision and permanent damage to your sight.

Pregnancy

If you are planning to become pregnant and have Sjogren's syndrome, ask your GP to test for certain antibodies that may be present in Sjogren's syndrome and are known to cause lupus in newborn babies. In very rare cases, the antibodies can also cause heart defects in babies.

If these antibodies are found, there should be no reason why you cannot proceed with the pregnancy, but your child may need additional specialist care during pregnancy and after the birth.

Read more about antenatal appointments.

Other conditions

There are a number of other conditions that have been linked to Sjogren's syndrome, including: 


Page last reviewed: 09/10/2012

Next review due: 09/10/2014

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The 2 comments posted are personal views. Any information they give has not been checked and may not be accurate.

Simmer said on 25 October 2013

Hi jay and Ruby,
I have been diagnosed with possible sjorgrens. I also have antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) which causes blood clots and thrombosis. I dont think the sjorgrens causes this so you may have APS. I would see if you have been tested for APS and if not request one. It is a blood test but is not widely available. I was only tested for it because I had symptoms of lupus (which I also have) and I had had three miscarriages but never had a blood clot in my life. Hope this helps. Good luck :-)

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jay and ruby said on 31 January 2013

this is carried on from the last comment, i am so sorry to write all this I know its more off a letter than a comment but its the first time i have found someone who has given me some answers I appreciate all that you have wrote and please believe me when i say I am not a hyprocondriac I have waited and looked for an article like this for what seems like an age. There is just one other point that you don't seem to have covered? Blood Clots and Thrombosis a very serious side to Sjogrens in my opinion as i have had six bloodclots in my lower limbs and I now have to inject myself for life with Heparin. This is how i found out I suffer from Sjogrens the consultant told me this is what caused me to have Thrombosis. Yet you have not mentioned this problem in your article? Was it a correct diagnosis for myself, I now have no doubt in my mind at all, I do suffer from it but were the clots caused by it or not? I would realy appreciate your opinion on this matter as I dont think you would leave something like this out of your article but then I wouldnt know i have this illness without them telling me the clots were caused because I have Sjogrens. Please help me through this reasoning as I can't seem to. Thank you so much, again i apologise for the lengths I have gone to but I don't know of another way to contact yourselves concerning this matter.

Yours Truely

V.W.

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