What is IgA and Why Don’t I Like It?

August 27, 2007 at 8:23 pm 1 comment

So, I have mentioned below that my body is intolerant of IgA. IgA is an antibody that protects the mucous membranes in the nose, mouth and digestive tract. Apparently, a small subset of CVID patients have this condition. It is characterized by a complete lack of IgA production by the immune system and concurent production of large amounts of anti-IgA antibodies. Yes, that is right folks, I have been endowed with the ability to create antibodies to my antibodies. The anti-IgA actually destroys any IgA that enters my body. Therefore, when I had my first IVIG infusion, my body attacked the small amount of IgA that was present in the Ig solution (most of it is IgG) and created the unpleasant reaction I recount below. Who knew this could happen? I guess it makes sense since antibodies are proteins and you can theoretically be allergic to any protein.

Fortunately, there are IgA depleted IVIG solutions and I was able to find one that didn’t plunge me into anaphylaxis.


Entry filed under: allergies, autoimmune disease, Common Variable Immunodeficiency(CVID), immunodeficiency, IVIG, Uncategorized.

Getting Worse Orphan Drug or Ineffective Molecule?

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Amber  |  April 18, 2009 at 2:01 pm

    Hey, I stumbled across your blog looking for some information on my illness. I too have been dealing with thrombocytopenia for two years. The doctors are reluctant to dx me with ITP because of macrocytosis and I have a hyper IgM and a decreased IgG. I have been through two bone marrow biopsies waiting on third, waiting on them to remove the spleen, waiting on everything.

    Its been two years and this is craziness.

    Good luck in your health…


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