Overview of Immunodeficiencies
Immunodeficiency disorders disrupt your body’s ability to defend itself against bacteria, viruses, and parasites. There are two types of immunodeficiency disorders: those you are born with (primary) and those that are acquired (secondary). Anything that weakens your immune system can lead to a secondary immunodeficiency disorder.
People who have a family history of primary immunodeficiency disorders have a higher-than-normal risk for developing primary disorders. Examples are:
- Spleen removal
Symptoms of Immunodeficiencies
- Sinus infections
- Yeast infections
If these problems do not respond to treatment or you do not completely get better over time, your doctor might test you for an immunodeficiency disorder.
- Ask you about your medical history
- Perform a physical exam
- Determine your white blood cell count
- Determine your T cell count
- Determine your immunoglobulin levels
Vaccines can test your immune system response in what is called an antibody test. Your doctor will give you a vaccine. Then they will test your blood for its response to the vaccine a few days or weeks later.
Treatment for Immunodeficiencies
The treatment for each immunodeficiency disorder will depend on the specific conditions. Treatment commonly includes antibiotics, immunoglobulin therapy, and some antiviral drugs.