World Primary Immunodeficiency (PI) week
#WorldPIWeek – is celebrated every year in April. This year was from 22nd to April 29th. The Irish Primary Immunodeficiency Association (IPIA) joined forces with St James Hospital & Children Health Ireland ‘Crumlin’ to help spread awareness about Primary Immunodeficiencies in Ireland. Early diagnosis and treatment can save lives, prevent complications from severe infection or undiagnosed autoimmunity, and improve the quality of life for patients with PID. Symptoms can vary widely from person to person, so it is important to be aware of the potential signs and seek medical help if you or your child experience any recurrent or severe infections, autoimmune problems, or other health concerns. With early diagnosis and proper treatment, patients with PID can lead long, healthy and fulfilling lives.
2022 is set to be a momentous year for paediatric immunology in Ireland, as it marks the addition of a screen for ADA-deficiency SCID to the National New-born Bloodspot Screening Programme. This represents an exciting new development, as it will allow infants with this life-threatening condition to receive early diagnosis and treatment. The programme is also being expanded to include other forms of SCID, which are currently undergoing evaluation by HIQA. Overall, this reflects the significant progress that has been made in paediatric immunology in Ireland and points towards even greater advances in the years to come. With new screening methods and improved therapies, we can look forward to an even brighter future for children with weakened immune systems. These children will have access to the critical support they need. And at every step along the way, their well-being remains a top priority. Ultimately, nothing is more important than ensuring that all children have a chance to thrive. So, let’s keep working together towards a healthier tomorrow for all our young patients!
The SJH Immunology Nursing team played a key role in promoting World Primary Immunodeficiency Week in St James Hospital Dublin. Also Beaumont Hospital, University Hospital Cork and Galway University Hospital contributed in distributing to their patients or new admissions. The idea was to raise awareness and increase knowledge among patients, caregivers and healthcare professionals throughout the week which helped to bring the crucial work of the SJH Immunology Nursing team to a wider audience, they care for the adults living with primary immunodeficiencies. Overall, this significant campaign played an important role in raising awareness about primary immunodeficiencies.
Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial for children and adults with Primary Immunodeficiencies. Because these conditions affect the body’s immune system, they can severely compromise a person’s ability to fight off infection. Early intervention can therefore prevent life-threatening complications such as serious bacterial and viral infections, sepsis, or even death. Additionally, by identifying and treating immunodeficiencies early on, doctors can often help to minimize or eliminate other health complications associated with the condition. Overall, early diagnosis and treatment of PI can improve the quality of life for patients by reducing healthcare costs and preventing serious illness or disease. Therefore, it is essential that both children and adults with PID receive timely diagnosis and access to high-quality care in order to protect their health and wellness.
There are a number of different treatments that are used to help children and adults with Primary Immunodeficiencies. For example, antibiotic prophylaxis is often used to help prevent infections in children with PI, as this can help to reduce their risk of hospitalization and serious complications. In addition, patients may be given extra vaccinations to boost their immune systems, helping them to fight off infections more effectively.
Another type of treatment is IRT, or immunoglobulin replacement therapy. This involves infusing the patient with fresh antibodies that have been harvested from donors, which helps to replenish the body’s supply and prevent many types of infections. Alternatively, medications known as immunomodulators can be prescribed in order to balance the immune response and prevent excessive inflammation.
In rare cases, treatments such as HSCT, thymic transplantation or autologous stem cell gene therapy may also be recommended for children or adults with PI. These advanced therapies can help to more effectively address some types of severe primary immunodeficiencies and restore the body’s natural immune function. Overall, there are many different treatments available for people living with PID, allowing them to manage their condition more effectively and lead healthy and happy lives.
For more information go to COVID-19 AND PIDs FAQS
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