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What causes Sjögren’s syndrome?

Sjögren’s syndrome is an autoimmune disease in which your immune system attacks your body’s own tissues – mainly your tear-producing glands, such as the lacrimal glands behind your eyelids, and the salivary glands in your mouth. Your body produces antibodies that react with and damage the tissues and nerve signals to your glands, reducing the amount of saliva and tears you produce.

The tear-producing glands

We don’t yet know what causes your immune system to behave this way. It’s been suggested that viruses could trigger it, although there’s no strong evidence for this.

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