Autoimmune Specialist

Progressive Medical Center

Integrative Functional Medicine & Health and Wellness Center located in Dunwoody, Atlanta, GA

Autoimmune disorders are the result of a malfunction in your body in which your immune system reacts to healthy cells as though they're harmful microorganisms. At Progressive Medical Center in Atlanta, Georgia, Benjamin Johnston Sr., MD, and the team use an extensive range of natural treatments to address the causes of autoimmune disorders and relieve your symptoms. To find out how to manage your condition without an overload of medication, call Progressive Medical Center and book an appointment or schedule one online today.

Autoimmune Q & A

What are autoimmune disorders?

Autoimmune disorders result from immune system malfunctions and an overreaction to specific cells and tissues in your body.

A healthy immune system recognizes anything invading the body that could threaten your health, like bacteria, viruses, and fungi. It destroys these microorganisms and often keeps a copy of the antibodies it creates to act even more quickly should you encounter the same infection again.

The immune system enables you to overcome colds and other illnesses, and retained antibodies are the basis of vaccinations against infection from certain diseases. However, if you have an autoimmune disorder, the immune system reacts to healthy cells in your body in the same way, attempting to destroy them as if they were dangerous. 

What are the different autoimmune disorders?

There are numerous forms of autoimmune disorders. The most common include:

Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes occurs when your immune system targets the cells in your pancreas that produce insulin. Without insulin, your body can't regulate the sugar levels in your blood, which causes widespread damage and can lead to serious, potentially life-threatening complications.

Hashimoto's thyroiditis

Hashimoto's is an autoimmune disorder of the thyroid gland that destroys the cells producing thyroid hormone. The result is an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), which causes problems like chronic fatigue, depression, weight gain, temperature sensitivity, and hair loss.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

IBD consists of two disorders, ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease, that develop when your immune system attacks the tissues lining your gastrointestinal tract. Ulcerative colitis affects the large intestine (colon) and rectum, while Crohn's disease can occur in any part of your digestive system. Common IBD symptoms include changes in your bowel movements, rectal bleeding, weight loss, and abdominal or rectal pain.

Rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis occurs when your immune system attacks the tissues inside your joints. It causes inflammation, chronic pain, joint distortion, and in some cases, significant disability.  

How are autoimmune disorders treated?

Progressive Medical Center adopts an integrative, functional medicine approach to treating autoimmune disorders that uses natural remedies and lifestyle changes to relieve your symptoms. The treatment plan your provider prepares for you may vary according to the type of autoimmune disorder you have, but could include:

  • Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT)
  • Nutritional counseling
  • Probiotics (healthy gut bacteria supplements)
  • Detoxification programs
  • IV (intravenous) infusions
  • Oxidative therapies
  • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections
  • Acupuncture
  • Bioelectric treatments
  • BioMat® therapy
  • Chiropractic
  • Laser therapy
  • Cryotherapy
  • Far-infrared sauna
  • Hyperbaric oxygen
  • Anti-inflammatory diet
  • Extracorporeal magnetotransduction therapy (EMTT)
  • Brain mapping and biofeedback

In many cases, these therapies, along with a healthy diet, active lifestyle, stress management, and quitting habits like smoking and excessive drinking, can improve your symptoms so much, you may not need conventional drug therapies.

For a comprehensive, natural approach to treating autoimmune disorders, call Progressive Medical Center or book an appointment online today.