Medical Specialties: Allergy/immunology, Family practice, Internal medicine, Pulmonology

Clinical Definition

Sarcoidosis is a systemic disease caused by an exaggerated inflammatory response by the immune system after environmental stimuli. The response causes the formation of granulomas. Although granulomas may develop anywhere on the body, they commonly occur in the lungs causing interstitial fibrosis. There may be a genetic predisposition, but the etiology is unknown. 

In Our Own Words

Sarcoidosis is a medical condition that can affect different parts of the body. For unknown reasons, the immune system creates little clusters of inflammation and fibrous tissue, known as granulomas. Granulomas are like little beads and can develop anywhere in the body, but are most common in the lungs and sometimes in the skin. Occasionally, they may be found in the nervous system, eyes, bones and joints. Researches don’t fully understand why some people develop the immune response, which leads to the condition, but genetics and environmental triggers may play a part in developing sarcoidosis. 

Common Types
  • Pulmonary (affecting the lungs)
  • Extrapulmonary (outside the lungs)
Share this article
  • University of Maryland Medical Center. "Sarcoidosis." Accessed October 2013.
  • The University of Chicago Medicine. "Pulmonary Sarcoidosis." Accessed October 2013.
  • University of North Carolina. Pulmonary Disease and Critical Care Medicine. "Sarcoidosis." Accessed October 2013.
Keep Reading

Investigate your bodys signs and signals.
Try Symptom Checker