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Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" - Reiter's Syndrome

These comments are made for the purpose of discussion and should NOT be used as recommendations for or against therapies or other treatments. An individual patient is always advised to consult their own physician.

[posted 01/18/2000]
Question: My Rheumatologist believes that I may have Reiter's Syndrome.
After reviewing information on the internet, this seems to
be caused by venereal disease. I am amrried and have been
faithful to my wife for the 10 years we have been together.
Given this information, what is the probable cause of me
getting Reiter's Syndrome? Thanks for your help!

Answer: One of the causes is veneral disease caused by a particular class of organism. However, like most autoimmune diseases-this is a potential trigger only, not the cause. The cause is your bodies immune system's response to a stimuli. Other stimuli can be the trigger as well.

Reiter's Disease and Decreased T-Cells [posted 8/7/98]
Question: I am a 39 male with Reiter's disease. I have tested negative to chlamydia and HIV. Approx. t-cell was 540 with a t-cell ratio of 1.04 1 year ago. Approx. t-cell last month was 752 cells/uL. t-cell ratio is 1.05. Can you provide an answer to why my t-ratio is decreased?

Answer: Your t cells vary a lot depending on the external challenge to them, much as your other white cells will go up or down if you are infected. I wouldn't be overly worried about this.

Rieterís Syndrome
Question: Where can I learn about Rieter's Syndrome? My 37-year-old friend at work quit his career this week because Rieter's Syndrome has made him feel like a 70-year-old man inside.

Answer: Any standard textbook of medicine or rheumatology. Harrisonís Principles of Internal Medicine(ed. Isselbacher, Braunwald, Wilson, Martin, Fauci, Kasper) or Kelly's Rheumatology will give adequate information. Available in any medical library and most general libraries(at least the Harrison's).

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