Immunodeficiency is a problem that keeps your body from battling infections and other diseases. This kind of disorder makes it easy for you to get bacterial and viral infections.

Immunodeficiency disorders are either primary or secondary. A primary or congenital issue is one you were conceived with. Acquired or secondary conditions are the ones that you get later in life. The acquired ones are more common that the congenital ones.

The immune system is made of the organs such as the spleen, the tonsils the bone marrow and the lymph nodes. These organs release lymphocytes which are white blood cells that fight foreign bodies known as antigens. These lymphocytes fight against bacteria, viruses, parasites and cancer cells.

An immunodeficiency problem disturbs your body’s capacity to shield itself against these antigens.

There are around more than a hundred primary immunodeficiency disorders. These include the following common ones:

  • X-linked agammaglobulinemia (XLA)
  • Common variable immunodeficiency (CVID)
  • Severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID

Secondary immunodeficiency disorders may include the following:

  • AIDS
  • Cancers of the immune system, like leukemia
  • Immune-complex diseases, like viral hepatitis
  • Multiple myeloma

Symptoms of a primary immunodeficiency include the following:

  • Frequent and recurrent infections
  • Inflammation
  • Blood disorders
  • Digestive problems
  • Delayed growth and development
  • Autoimmune disorders


Your doctor will do a physical examination. Tests used to diagnose immunodeficiency may include the following:

  • Blood tests, including counts for blood cells and immune system cells
  • Prenatal testing for parents with a child who has primary immunodeficiency disorder
  • DNA testing for genetic defects



Treatments for primary immunodeficiency include preventing and treating infections, boosting immunity and treating the reason for the immunodeficiency. Immunodeficiencies that are linked to diseases such as cancer, the primary cause should be dealt with.




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