source: Amyloidosis Support Groups
year: 2013 summary/abstract:
All of the normal proteins in our body are biodegradable and recyclable. Amyloidosis is a disease in which abnormal proteins (amyloid) are resistant to being broken down. As a consequence, the amyloid proteins deposit and accumulate in the body’s tissues. If amyloid builds up in the kidney, heart, liver, gastrointestinal tract or nerves, it causes those organs to function poorly. Thus, the symptoms of amyloidosis are associated with the abnormal functioning of the organs involved. Typically, patients will have some of the following symptoms: unexplained weight loss, fatigue, shortness of breath, foamy urine, swelling in the ankles and legs, as well as numbness and tingling in the hands and feet.
These are manifestations of damage to the underlying organs from the insoluble amyloid protein. Treatments are designed either to dissolve the amyloid deposits or to interrupt their production. Left untreated, the disease can be life-threatening. Therefore, early and accurate diagnosis is the key to promoting positive outcomes. read more