Is Stress Linked to Autoimmune Diseases?

Is Stress Linked to Autoimmune Diseases?

In a recent edition of JAMA, the results of a 30-year study examining the possible connection between stress and autoimmune disease were revealed. The findings don’t simply demonstrate a link; instead, they reveal that stress-related disorders are significantly associated with risks of developing the subsequent autoimmune disease. In the study of over 100,000 subjects, the correlation showed that individuals with a diagnosed stress-related disorder were 30-40% more likely to later be diagnosed with one of many possible autoimmune diseases.

What is a Stress-Related Disorder?

The type of stress study subjects encountered is not to be confused with the stressors we encounter during everyday life. Sitting in traffic or worrying about being late for a meeting, for example, are examples of acute stress. These forms of short-term stress generally come and go but fail to create the sort of long-term damage produced by chronic stress, or stress-related disorders.

Stress-related disorders are mental health conditions resulting from short- and long-term anxiety from mental, physical, or emotional stress. Examples of these include post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), obsessive-compulsive disorder, acute stress reaction, and adjustment disorder.

Which Types of Autoimmune Disorders Are Linked to Stress?

According to the study’s findings, individuals with stress-related disorders were more inclined to be diagnosed with one of 41 autoimmune disorders. Among the many autoimmune diseases observed by the research were psoriasis, Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and celiac disease.

Interestingly, additional variables seemed to further increase – or decrease – one’s risks of developing an autoimmune disease. Being diagnosed with PTSD at a young age, for instance, increased risks, while receiving antidepressant treatment shortly after being diagnosed with PTSD lowered rates of subsequent autoimmune disease diagnosis. Thus, it could be inferred that receiving treatment for a stress-related disorder may help to treat not only the stress itself but also minimize the lasting implications caused by it, including increased risks of disease.

What Causes the Connection?

Further research must still be conducted to pinpoint the precise long-term effects stress has on the body, and more specifically, on the immune system. Experts speculate that factors such as changes in cortisol levels and pro-inflammatory cytokine levels may need to be examined. Another hypothesis set forth by researchers is that individuals living with conditions such as PTSD might be more inclined towards unhealthy behaviors such as drinking more alcohol or sleeping less.

Although further research into this connection has yet to be conducted, one important takeaway from the findings is the fact that seeking treatment for stress-related disorders should now be considered more critical than ever. By consulting mental health professionals, individuals living with these conditions can pursue a tailored treatment approach to support short- and long-term improvements in overall wellness. For those with an auto-immune condition, see how stem cell therapy may help your symptoms and improve quality of life.

Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month

Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month

Another year has past and Multiple Sclerosis Awareness month is upon us once again. Every month we treat new patients that have been diagnosed with this disease and while it has been a pleasure for us to do so – it is something we wish we did not have to do. While we are seeing significant progress in our patients, the work of the MS and stem cell communities is far from finished. Let this month not only remind us of Multiple Sclerosis and its effects on friends and loved ones but also on treatments, research, and continuing efforts being used to eradicate its existence.

Over 2 million people in the world have officially heard the diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis (MS), but researchers expect the actual number is far more and growing quickly. MS is considered a difficult disease to diagnose and treat due to the variety of symptoms a patient experiences throughout its progression. MS research has resulted in two treatment methods; the first method is preventing the abnormal response of one’s immune system. The second method involves the replenishment of the myelin sheath cells protecting the nerve fibers in your brain. Medications designed today follow the first method in delaying the abnormal immune response. Traditionally, there was a lack of treatment options for the second method. However, with new research and technology, Stemedix, and physicians of regenerative medicine have produced a treatment to assist in replacing the cells damaged by this disease.

Adult stem cell therapy, also known as Adipose-Derived Stem Cell (ADSC) treatment, is a regenerative procedure designed to use your own supply of stem cells to repair and replace diseased tissue in the body. Past treatments have shown that adult stem cells not only have the potential to regenerate lost or damaged myelin sheath tissues, but also have the ability to modulate the immune system, temporarily disabling the abnormal attack and helping to slow its progress.

The physicians and researchers at Stemedix are revolutionizing this treatment to offer relief and continued hope to patients battling with this life altering diagnosis. This procedure includes the harvesting hundreds of millions of stem cells from their most abundant source, the patients adipose (fat) tissue, activating them through an enrichment process, and reintroducing them into the human body. These stem cells are hardwired to target areas of the body following inflammatory signals from your brain telling them where repair is needed most. The newly introduced adult stem cells follow your body’s signals and and begin the necessary repairs. This advancement in using adult stem cell therapy assists the body to regenerate missing or diseased tissue that would not ordinarily be regrown.

This month help us spread the word and assist others in fighting back against this debilitating condition.

Learn more about stem cell treatment for Multiple Sclerosis.

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