amyloidosis causes symptoms

Overview

Amyloidosis (am-uh-loi-DO-sis) is a rare disease that occurs when an abnormal protein, called amyloid, builds up in your organs and interferes with their normal function.
Amyloid isn't normally found in the body, but it can be formed from several different types of protein. Organs that may be affected include the heart, kidneys, liver, spleen, nervous system and digestive tract.
Some varieties of amyloidosis occur in association with other diseases. These types may improve with treatment of the underlying disease. Some varieties of amyloidosis may lead to life-threatening organ failure.
Treatments may include chemotherapy similar to that used to combat cancer. Your doctor may suggest medications to reduce amyloid production and to control symptoms. Some people may benefit from organ or stem cell transplants.

Symptoms

You may not experience signs and symptoms of amyloidosis until the condition is advanced. When signs and symptoms are evident, they depend on which of your organs are affected.
Signs and symptoms of amyloidosis may include:
  • Swelling of your ankles and legs
  • Severe fatigue and weakness
  • Shortness of breath with minimal exertion