Immunodeficiency Disease: Disorder Types, Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

Immunodeficiency Disease Disorder Types, Symptoms, Causes

Often, due to an infection or fever, the immune system doesn’t function effectively leading to weakness in the body. Thus, your body continuously struggles to fight against microbes such as viruses, bacteria, or other parasites. With a weakened immune system, you become more vulnerable to infections.

If you are in the above condition, then you are likely to suffer from immunodeficiency disease which can impact your daily routine. This increases your need to visit a doctor who can help you diagnose an immunodeficiency disorder.


Types of Immunodeficiency diseases

  1. Primary Immunodeficiency diseases are caused due to genetic reasons in which a person is born with the disorder. Some examples are common variable immunodeficiency (CVID) and X-linked agammaglobulinemia (XLA).



  1. Secondary Immunodeficiency diseases are those that are acquired and are not hereditary. They occur when the immune system is weakened due to reasons such as chemotherapy, radiation, or diabetes. Some examples of secondary Immunodeficiency diseases are AIDS, viral hepatitis, multiple myeloma.


  1. Autoimmune diseases:​ It is a condition where the immune system attacks your own body mistakenly. Examples of autoimmune diseases are rheumatoid arthritis, coeliac disease, lupus.


Autoimmune diseases



Examples of some of the symptoms of the most acquired immunodeficiency diseases include:


  • Diarrhoea
  • Colds
  • Pneumonia
  • Sinus infections.

Causes of Immunodeficiency diseases: 


When there is an infection in the body via bacteria, virus or other germs, an infection is developed. Some of the common causes of immunodeficiency diseases include:

Primary Immunodeficiency diseases:

  • In Primary Immunodeficiency diseases, the antibodies are not able to perform correctly, or they are less in number, or are completely absent. This leads to

repeated infections that may be incurable and very severe.



Secondary Immunodeficiency diseases:


  • Secondary Immunodeficiency diseases occur as the result of some severe disorders that last for an extended period, such as cancer.
  • If you are diabetic, then the high levels of blood sugar do not allow the white blood cells to perform efficiently.
  • If you are on a drug for a long time, this disease can be a result of its after-effects.
  • Having a poor diet is another cause.
  • Immunosuppressants such as

corticosteroids used in diseases such as arthritis can also cause this disorder.

  • Exposure to radiation or chemotherapy used in cancer patients


 Diagnosis of Immunodeficiency Disease:

If the doctor suspects Immunodeficiency Disease, then he can ask you to undergo the following tests:

  • A blood test in which the complete blood count is taken to examine the number of white blood cells and to detect any abnormality present.
  • A skin test in the case of a T – cell abnormality.
  • A biopsy to find out the type of Immunodeficiency Disorder.
  • If the doctor suspects defects in the immune system, he will suggest genetic testing.

Treatment of Immunodeficiency Disease

The treatment of Immunodeficiency Disease consists of:

  • You may have to be administered with antibodies from healthy people who have a proper immune system. This will reduce the occurrence of bacterial infections.
  • You have to eat only cooked food and consume only purified water.
  • Avoid getting infected from others.
  • You will need to follow strict personal hygiene methods.
  • Vaccinations play an important role in secondary Immunodeficiency Disease if the disorder does not hamper the production of antibodies.
  • You may be advised to take antibiotics when there are symptoms of infection like a fever. If you are undergoing surgery or dental treatment, then antibiotics should be given to avoid immunodeficiency disease.
  • If you are suffering from chickenpox or influenza, then antiviral drugs may be given as it increases the possibility of getting viral infections.


  • Immune Globulin treatment: Patients who have developed this disorder on account of missing or reduced antibodies can be administered immune globulin through their veins or under their skins as a replacement.
  • If you are diagnosed with severe Immunodeficiency diseases, then stem cell transplantation is adopted where the stem cells from blood or bone marrow are transplanted.
  • Thymus tissue transplantation is carried out in some cases.
  • Gene therapy treats adenosine deaminase deficiency and severe combined immunodeficiency.
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