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Childhood Sjögren's

Children with Sjögren’s tend to present differently than adults. Children rarely present with the predominant symptoms of dry mouth and dry eyes.  However, around a third of children with childhood Sjögren's have symptoms of dry mouth and dry eyes. Uniquely, there is much higher rate of recurrent and persistent parotitis in childhood presentations. Parotitis is inflammation of the salivary gland by the cheek.  It was found that about 60% of children had a history of parotitis, as opposed to 24% of adults with Sjögren’s.


The prognosis of childhood Sjögren’s is different for each child and is dependent on their specific Sjögren’s manifestations.  The course as well as a child’s response to specific treatments is different for each individual.  Some children’s symptoms may improve greatly with treatment over time, with time to improvement highly variable depending on the child and the symptom(s). Therefore, it is important to work closely with a rheumatologist to determine the best treatment plan.  Children also need routine monitoring for damage by oral and ocular health specialist. Additionally, children should maintain a healthy lifestyle including staying active.

Pediatric Support Group

Thanks to dedicated volunteers, Sharon and Jamie, two mothers of children with Sjögren’s, the Foundation launched a support group for children and their parents.  Please contact Sharon at (301) 875-2701 for more information.


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