Behçet's Syndrome

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

  • Medical Editor: Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD
    Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

    Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

    Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.

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Behçet's syndrome facts

  • Behçet's syndrome is associated with inflammation of various areas of the body.
  • Symptoms of Behçet's syndrome depend on the body areas affected including:
    • Arteries that supply blood to the body's tissues
    • Veins that take the blood back to the lungs
    • The back of the eyes (retina)
    • Brain
    • Joints
    • Skin
    • Bowels
  • Recurrent mouth ulcers are characteristic of Behçet's syndrome.
  • Treatment of Behçet's syndrome depends on the severity and the location of its manifestations.

What is Behçet's syndrome?

Behçet's syndrome is classically characterized as a triad of symptoms that include recurring crops of mouth ulcers (aphthous ulcers, canker sores), genital ulcers, and inflammation of a specialized area around the pupil of the eye termed the uvea. The inflammation of the area of the eye that is around the pupil is called uveitis. Behçet's syndrome is also sometimes referred to as Behçet's disease.

What causes and contagious of Behçet's syndrome?

The cause of Behçet's syndrome is not known. The disease is relatively rare but is more frequent and severe in patients from the Eastern Mediterranean and Asia than those of European descent. Both inherited (genetic) and environmental factors, such as microbe infections, are suspected to be factors that contribute to the development of Behçet's. Behçet's is not proven to be contagious.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/18/2015

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