Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory disease of the lung, which can also involve the entire body. Inflammation is usually a healthy response to injury and infection, but in this case, it has been magnified and exaggerated. Consider it a type of “arthritis” of the lung. However, unlike arthritis, which is predictable, sarcoidosis is fairly unpredictable. It can appear and disappear at will. It can be completely benign and never require therapy, or it can be devastating and lead to pulmonary hypertension (severe high blood pressure in the lungs), fibrosis (scarring), and lung destruction requiring lung transplantation.
The long term management of sarcoidosis was previously done with prednisone (ie, steroids), however, newer agents can lead to improved outcomes with markedly less side effects.