Sarcoidosis is a multisystem inflammatory disease, which predominantly affects the lungs. Inflammation in the various organs results in formation of abnormal lumps or nodules (called granulomas) in one or more organs of the body. Varied presentation and because of lack of a single diagnostic test, it can often be difficult to diagnose it. The disease affects both men and women of all races and ages. It usually affects young adults (< 40 years), but the most common age group in people affected with sarcoidosis is between 20 and 29 years of age and occurs slightly more often in women than in men.
Duration of sarcoidosis
Many people with sarcoidosis may not be aware that they have the disease as the symptoms are present for a short time and disappear without the person even knowing they have the disease.
Remission occurs in many patients diagnosed with sarcoidosis. The term “remission” means that the disease isn't active, but there is a possibility that it can return. According to some studies, more than 50% of people with sarcoidosis have remission within 3 years of diagnosis and about 65% have remission within 10 years of diagnosis. People, who have Lofgren's syndrome, are more likely to have remission. Apart from its impact on various organs and tissues, the uncertainty of the disease can make a person emotionally fragile. Depression is not uncommon in sarcoidosis patients.
Relapse (i.e. return of the disease) in 1 or more years after remission is not common. It occurs in less than 5 percent of patients. Some people with sarcoidosis may develop organ damage. Complications develop in about 20-25% of patients. Damage usually occurs many years after a person is diagnosed with the disease and it may involve more than one organ. Only rarely can sarcoidosis be fatal (death occurs in 1% to 6% of all patients with sarcoidosis) and in most cases, death occurs due to problems with the lungs, heart or brain.