Sjögren's syndrome - Symptoms 

Symptoms of Sjögren's syndrome 

The most commonly reported symptoms of Sjögren's syndrome are a dry mouth and eyes, which can lead to other associated symptoms.

However, these symptoms can be common in old age, and most people with dry eyes or a dry mouth do not have Sjögren's syndrome.

Many women also experience vaginal dryness, which can make sex painful.

Associated symptoms of dry mouth

A dry mouth can lead to:

Associated symptoms of dry eyes

Dry eyes can lead to:

  • burning or stinging eyes
  • itchy eyes
  • a feeling that there's grit in your eyes
  • irritated and swollen eyelids
  • sensitivity to light (photophobia)
  • tired eyes
  • mucus discharge from your eyes

These symptoms can get worse when you're:

  • in a windy or smoky environment
  • in an air-conditioned building
  • travelling on aeroplane

Other symptoms of Sjögren's syndrome

In more serious cases of Sjögren's syndrome, the immune system can attack other parts of the body, causing symptoms and conditions such as:

  • dry skin
  • tiredness and fatigue – which are common and can lead to total exhaustion
  • muscle pain
  • joint pain, stiffness and swelling
  • vasculitis (inflammation of blood vessels)
  • difficulty concentrating, remembering and reasoning

Page last reviewed: 14/10/2014

Next review due: 14/10/2016


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The 5 comments posted are personal views. Any information they give has not been checked and may not be accurate.

Zilliy said on 03 August 2014

As a Sjogren's Syndrome sufferer for many years, the memory loss is certainly one of the symptoms -- although I have been putting it down to the passing of the years. As to other symptoms, I can manage the dry eyes, mouth, nose, skin and vagina with drops and creams. I find one tablet daily of Hydroxychloroquine helpful. What I find most difficult of all is the total fatigue which strikes me every few months or so and leaves me prone on the sofa for anything from one week to six. Yet fatigue is usually at the bottom of the list of symptoms on sites like this and barely referred to. I can live with the other symptoms. I only wish someone would come up with a treatment for the fatigue.

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katecmb said on 27 June 2014

I have just been diagnosed with Sjogren's after having a biopsy. I have also been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. I don't get much help with either. Is there anyone out there who can give some advice with the awful fatigue, etc?

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Marcy Elaine said on 25 August 2011

Yes, I've got Sjogren's syndrome. I was told by the GP that my mental confusion and memory loss is not related to SS...all people diagnosed with SS have suffering with memory loss!

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Cheryl the Peril said on 23 April 2011

I agee with cheka

I know a GP with Sjogren's who was not told about the mental confusion and thought he was mentally ill and went to a psychiatrist who prescribed anti depressants. If he had been aware that mental confusion was normal he might not have gone down that route. Stopping anti depressants is difficult once you have started.

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cheka said on 23 October 2010

There is no mention here of the mental confusion and memory-loss which my partner & I have found to be a feature common to many SS sufferers. There appears to be little or no current research into this aspect of the disease. I think it a pity that a well-respected site such as this should omit even a mention of this symptom.

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