« Previous Page

Wegener's Granulomatosis

Wegener's Granulomatosis

Wegener's granulomatosis is a rare autoimmune disorder that occurs when a person's defense (immune) system attacks its own tissues as if they were foreign substances. It usually begins as an inflammation of the upper and lower respiratory tract and then progresses to inflammation of the blood vessels (vasculitis) and inflammation of the filters in the kidneys (glomerulonephritis).

Wegener's granulomatosis may also affect the skin, joints, eyes, and nervous system. The cause of the disease is unknown.

Corticosteroids and other medicines that suppress the immune system may be used to treat this disease. Doctors sometimes use plasma exchange (plasmapheresis) to treat severe cases.

Last Revised: May 8, 2013

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Tushar J. Vachharajani, MD, FASN, FACP - Nephrology

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

© 1995-2014 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

× Alternate Text