Immunodeficiency

ImmunodeficiencyImmunodeficiency is the inability of the organism to protect itself from infection. This disorder is almost always the result of some other illness.

In the most common form of immunodeficiency, lymphocytes lose the ability to produce a sufficient number of antibodies that protect the body against microbes. The cause is often a disease such as lymphoma, myeloma, Hodgkin’s disease and some types of leukemia.

Some types of immunosuppressive drugs may also reduce the production of antibodies. Much less often, the immunodeficiency is the disease itself; in such cases, it is a consequence of inherited disorder.

Treatment

If the condition of an immunodeficiency is caused by some other disease or the action of the drug that the patient has to take, it is treated with injections of concentrated solution of antibodies that are missing: the solution is prepared from the donor blood. Injections lasts only a few weeks as new antibodies slowly break down, so they are given until the primary disease is cured or as long as the patient does not stop taking an immunosuppressive drug.

The inherited type of immunodeficiency is treated by bone marrow transplantation from a person with the same type of tissue. The success of the operation is unpredictable.