LAM or Lymphangioleiomoymatosis is rare lung disease that only affects women especially in child-bearing years.
This web page has been set up in order to highlight the disease LAM and to help Irish women find the different groups in Europe and America that are helping to highlight this disease.
There are different types and stages of LAM. When you are first diagnosed there is a lot of information to take in but over time you will come to know that many women across the world have this rare disease and each are at different stages. Some might need oxygen others might never require it.
We need to highlight LAM in the medical field in Ireland and increase awarenesss of this rare disease amongst doctors.
At present the UK have a patient support group that Irish women are more then welcome to join and also there is a facebook group called lammies. Please see our links page for details.
LAM mainly affects the lungs, where an abnormal type of smooth muscle cell (called a LAM cell) builds up. This build up of LAM cells occurs around the airways (breathing tubes) and also around the blood vessels and the lymph vessels (lymph vessels drain excess fluid from the lungs). The LAM cells lead to cysts developing in the lungs and are very clear on a CT lung scan. The main effects of LAM are in the lung but quite a few patients also have a tumour in the kidneys and sometimes more than one; they are not malignant but can cause bleeding. Lymph nodes may be enlarged in other parts of the body but they don’t usually cause problems.
The name lymphangioleiomyomatosis reflects the different components of the disease. Lymph and angio refer to the lymph and blood vessels that are involved and leiomyo refers to the smooth muscle. LAM is sometimes called sporadic LAM to distinguish it from LAM that occurs in patients who have tuberous sclerosis (see LAM and Tuberous Sclerosis.)