While it isn’t nearly as recognizable as its cancerous kin, the lung disease sarcoidosis has become increasingly prevalent in recent years, a new study has found.
In fact, researchers from the Department of Radiology at the Ohio State University College of Medicine say that rates of the disease — which causes tiny clumps of abnormal tissue (granulomas) to form in certain organs of the body, resulting in inflammation in the lymph nodes, lungs, liver, eyes, skin, or other tissues — have more than doubled in the 15 years leading up to their study.
Examining medical records of 1.48 million patients in Franklin County, Ohio, a demographic profile that they say is nearly identical to that of the U.S., the study authors found that the prevalence of sarcoidosis increased steadily from 164 in 100,000 in 1995 to 330 in 100,000 in 2010. Their findings were published this month in the journal Respiratory Medicine.
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Comedian Bernie Mac’s death in 2008 shed some light on sarcoidosis. Mac suffered from a compromised immune system as a result of his battle with the disease, though it was in remission at the time of his death, his sister-in-law told People magazine.
Last year, actress Tisha Campbell-Martin responded to rumors that she was dying from sarcoidosis, telling People that she’d had the disease for nearly 10 years. “I was diagnosed with a lung disorder that some people walk around with and don’t even know they have,” she said.
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