Monday 10 September 2012

Annual BSSA Meeting 2012

Newcastle is fortunate to welcome the Annual General Meeting of the British Sjögren’s Syndrome Association (BSSA) to the world renowned International Centre for Life on 15th September, where many eminent members of the medical profession will give their time to address those attending the conference.  The conference is aimed at both patients, their supporters and allied health care professionals.

Sjögren’s Syndrome is the second most common autoimmune rheumatic disease where the body’s immune system attacks parts of the body instead of fighting infection.  In Sjögren’s Syndrome the glands that produce saliva, tears and other secretions become inflamed and as a result can stop working with key symptoms including dry eye and dry mouth.  Chronic fatigue can also be a major factor.  Sjögren’s Syndrome can strike at any age, but most commonly affects women between the ages of 40 and 60 and 90% of cases are female. Despite being discovered in the early 20th century by the ophthalmologist Henrik Sjogren, the causes remain unknown with limited treatments available.

The BSSA is a charity dedicated to providing support and information to individuals affected by this disease, as well playing a key role in raising awareness.  Support groups operate throughout the UK helping sufferers to cope with the day-to-day challenges of this distressing condition. In addition, Dr Wan-Fai Ng, Newcastle University is the leading researcher for a national registry the ‘United Kingdom Primary Sjögren’s Syndrome Registry’ which is designed to investigate the causes of Sjögren’s syndrome as well as facilitate new clinical trials.

Our local support group the ‘North East Sjögren Support Association’ (NESSA), has over 40 members, and regularly meet at the Freeman Hospital to learn more about this condition as well as to socialise and to support each other. If you wish to know more about NESSA please contact Madge at .

If you would like further information about the BSSA conference you can email  or telephone Isabel on 0121 4780222