Dear Pharmacist: I am suffering with Sjogren’s syndrome, it makes my skin, eyes and mouth so terribly dry. Even sex is painful. Do you have any suggestions that may work for me? — P.W., Santa Rosa
A: Sjogren’s syndrome, or “SS,” mainly affects women and occurs, in part, when white blood cells attack the moisture-producing glands. Think dry-dry eyes and mouth, vaginal dryness, dry skin, joint pain; persistent cough or harm to the kidneys, lungs, liver or GI tract can occur. Temporary relief comes from running humidifiers, taking medicine or using natural herbs. Prescriptions of either “pilocarpine” or Evoxac may help dry eyes/mouth, as can inexpensive “artificial tear” eye drops. Immunosuppressant drugs calm a hyperactive immune system, in an attempt to balance a see-saw immune system that is severely tilted.
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