Penn Sjögren's Syndrome Center
The Penn Sjögren's Syndrome Center, part of the Penn Rheumatology, provides a multidisciplinary approach to treating patients with Sjögren's syndrome. It is the only major treatment center for Sjögren's within a 100-mile radius of Philadelphia, treating patients from across the country and around the world. Services are provided by a network of Penn Medicine specialists who are experts in treating various Sjögren's-related problems.
Based at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, Penn's Sjögren's Syndrome Center serves as the regional headquarters of the Philadelphia Chapter of the Sjögren's Syndrome Foundation.
Primarily affecting women, Sjögren's syndrome is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes dryness of the eyes and mouth, as well as a variety of multisystem manifestations.
While some patients experience mild discomfort from their symptoms, others suffer debilitating symptoms that greatly impair their quality of life. In about 10 percent of cases, the disease may spread to the internal organs and cause arthritis, fatigue or problems of the lungs, kidneys and central nervous system.
Patients may also experience exocrine gland dysfunction in other organs, so when other health problems arise, physicians must determine the precise cause of a Sjögren's patient's dry mouth or dry eyes.
Sometimes, Sjögren's may present with symptoms other than dry eyes and dry mouth, and in some cases, the symptoms of dry eyes and dry mouth may be completely absent.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Rheumatologists in the Penn Sjögren's Syndrome Center collaborate closely with specialists in ophthalmology and oral medicine to provide a complete diagnosis and treatment program for patients suffering from Sjögren's.
If Sjögren's is suspected, a series of blood tests, ophthalmologic tests and dental tests are used to confirm the diagnosis. The course of treatment may include prescription products, over-the-counter medications and non-medications strategies. Treatment includes eye care at the Penn Dry Eye and Ocular Surface Center and mouth care from Penn Oral Medicine.
Given the complexity of Sjögren's syndrome, Penn Medicine utilizes a multidisciplinary approach that combines the expertise of Penn specialists who collaborate and determine an individualized treatment plan designed expressly for each patient. Center Director, Frederick Vivino, MD, is also principal investigator for the Sjögren's Syndrome International Collaborative Clinical Alliance (SICCA) at Penn Presbyterian, a collaborative group of clinical and laboratory investigators from across the world working together to study Sjögren's syndrome.
Frederick Vivino, MD
Penn Dry Eye and Ocular Surface Center
Vatinee Y. Bunya, MD
Mina Massaro-Giordano, MD
Stephen E. Orlin, MD
Michael E. Sulewski, MD
Penn Oral Medicine
Martin S. Greenberg, DDS