- Location: the Middle East, Asia, and Japan
- Family history of Behcets disease
- A gene marker called the HLA-B51/B5 allele
- In the United States, men are more likely than women to develop this condition.
- In the Middle East, Asia, and Japan, women are more likely than men to develop Behcets.
- Age: 20's and 30's
- Affect almost all people with the disease
- Usually are the first to appear
- Usually last for 10-14 days
- Can be painful
- Can cause scarring
Ulcerated Gums Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
- In men: appear on the penis and/or scrotum
- In women: appear on the vulva or within the vagina
- Can be painful
- Can cause scarring
Uveitis—inflammation of the middle part of the eye, including the iris
- Tends to cause eye redness, blurred vision, sensitivity to light, and watering eyes
- If not treated, can cause partial vision loss or blindness
Arthritis—inflammation of joints
- Tends to be painful
- Usually does not cause permanent joint damage
Skin problems, such as sores
- May appear as red, raised sores or bumps, or may be flat (flush with the skin)
- Usually appear on the legs and upper torso
- Severe fatigue during a flare
- Caused by thrombophlebitis (inflammation of veins), usually in the legs
- Can cause severe complications if not treated quickly
Aneurysms, or severely dilated blood vessels
- May rupture and cause severe consequences
Heart problems, such as:
- Abnormal heart rhythms
- Missed heartbeats
- Early heartbeats
- Inflammation of the heart muscle (myocarditis)
- Central nervous system problems
Stroke from a Cerebral Aneurysm Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
- Causes ulcers and inflammation of the digestive tract (rarely)
- Symptoms are similar to those of many other diseases.
- Symptoms often appear very slowly, over months or years.
- There is no specific test to confirm the disease.
- Eye inflammation
- Genital sores
- Skin sores
- Oral corticosteroids—to reduce inflammation and pain
Immunosuppressive drugs—to help control the overactive immune system. These may include:
Rest and Exercise
- Rest when symptoms flare to help speed healing.
- Engage in moderate exercise when symptoms recede to help keep joints flexible and strong.
American Behcets Disease Association http://www.behcets.com
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases http://www.niams.nih.gov
The Arthritis Society http://www.arthritis.ca
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Abu El Asrar, ABoooud EB, ALbibhi H, Al-Arfaj A. Long-term safety and efficacy of infliximab therapy in refractory uveitis due to Behcet's disease. Int Ophthalmol. Sep 23, 2006.
Cakir O, Eren N, Ulka R, Nazaroghi H. Bilateral subclavian arterial aneurysm and ruptured abdominal aorta pseudoaneurysm in Behcet's disease. Ann Vasc Surg. 2002,16:516-520
The Medical Letter. 1996;38:15.
The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy. Simon & Schuster; 2001.
National Organization of Rare Disorders, Inc. website. Available at: http://www.rarediseases.org/ .
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases website. Available at: http://www.niams.nih.gov.
Okada AA. Behcet's disease: general concepts and recent advances. Curr Opin Ophthalmol. 2006;17:551-556.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods MD
- Review Date: 08/2013 -
- Update Date: 05/11/2013 -
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