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Lupus

Lupus or Thymus Gland?

08/20/2001

Question:

Okay my question more refers to the Thymus Gland. I had it removed 10 years ago when i was 13 years old. It was enlarged and rapped around my heart. I have always had health problems. I could never go into it all. I`ll go with my most recent problem, when I was pregnant about 2 years ago. I got a flu that got out of control. Low white cell. Something wrong with my placelet. Lets just say my blood was really messed up. They life flighted me to another hostpital, because baby in danger, and they couldn`t get fever down, and the blood. By the time I got to the other hostpital I was going back to normail, and they sent me home. I am always confusing doctors. It could be Lupus from what I`ve read about Lupus. But it may just be because I have No THymus Gland. What do you think. How does not having a Thymus gland affect my health? For instance can a simple flu get out of control, because I`m unable to fight it? Am I now more accessible to other diseases? Is there anything I can do to improve the situation?

Answer:

1. Will the loss of Thymus affect your health? No! The Thymus involutes, gets smaller with age and is more or less `lost` in adult. That means that adults do not really need the thymus to fight disease. Actually when it persists or enlarges in adults (tumor-like `thymoma`) people have health problems immune deficiency, anemia, neurological problems.

2. I cannot tell you from the information you gave us if you have lupus. Lupus may present with low white blood cells and low platelets but those usually are not the only signs of disease. Are those still persistent? Do you have any symptoms? Viruses and certain complications of pregnancy can also present platelet problems. It is reassuring that everything was back to normal when you got admitted to the other hospital.

For more information:

Go to the Lupus health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Yolanda   Farhey, MD Yolanda Farhey, MD
Associate Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati