Content last updated on: August 8, 2014


Autoinflammation means 'to inflame on its own'

The term 'autoinflammation' is composed of the Greek word autós, which means on its own, and the Latin word inflammare, which can be translated as to inflame. Therefore, autoinflammations literally means 'to inflame on its own'.


In autoinflammatory diseases the immune system is overactive, which leads to excess inflammation. This is caused by changes in the innate, non-specific part of the immune system.  In autoinflammation, inflammation commences with triggers that are normally insufficient to cause such response, hence the name autoinflammation.


Several different autoinflammatory diseases are known

There are several autoinflammatory diseases and all of them are all rare. Examples of autoinflammatory diseases are:

- Familial Mediterranean fever (FMF)

- Cryopyrin associated periodic syndrome (CAPS)

- Hyperimmunoglobulin D and periodic fever syndrome (HIDS)

- TNF-receptor associated periodic syndrome (TRAPS)

- Adult onset Still's disease (AOSD)

- Schnitzler syndrome

- Periodic fever, aphtous stomatitis, pharyngitis and adenitis (PFAPA) syndrome

- Pyogenic arthritis, pyoderma gangrenosum and ance (PAPA) syndrome

- Blau syndrome

There are also people that have symptoms of autoinflammation, but in whom non of these diseases can be diagnosed. These people have autoinflammation of unknown cause.


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