IGA Deficiency

In the winter of 2012 I found out I have an IGA Deficiency. Yes, after years and years of doctors and even Mayo Clinic (who didn’t find this) I went to a new doctor in NYC who came across this mild genetic immunodeficiency. Not a big deal! It just means that I lack Immunoglobulin A (IGA), a type of antibody that protects against infections in my digestive tract (gut) and sinuses- which is why I always have belly aches and sinus pressure. It’s the most common amongst primary antibody deficiencies so I’m not anything special for having this- many of us have it and don’t even know it. Crazy, right?

It’s said that 1 in 333 people have this, which makes it relatively common. An IGA Deficiency means I have an inherited inability to produce Immunoglobulin A (IGA)- which is a part of my body’s defenses against infection at the body’s surfaces (mainly surfaces of digestive system and respiratory system), which as a result means that bacteria in these locations are more likely to cause disease.

This all makes sense and explains why I often have stomach infections from bacteria in food, dirty hands, etc. I don’t do any treatment for this, however I have learned from my Integrative M.D., Dr. Susan Blum in Westchester, NY that I can take a supplement called IGG 2000 DF, which is a proprietary immunoglobulin concentrate made by Xymogen EP (Exclusively Patented) or I can consume protein powders made from whey (a form of dairy), which also helps with IGA. Since whey (dairy) bothers my stomach I am unable to eat these protein powders, therefore I take the IGG 2000 DF every day.

I’ve met many people who have an IGA deficiency and who all live healthy lives, have healthy children and don’t get troubled by it. So, if you do have an IGA deficiency it’s important to work with your Integrative M.D. and be cautious of bacteria that you put into your mouth (digestive) and that you breathe in (environment).

It is essential to work with a nutritionist and an Integrative M.D. because I am sharing general information that is not intended to be medical advice. This information is only given for informational purposes.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Angie May 11, 2013 at 12:51 pm

Hi Amie,
thank you for sharing in your wellspring of knowledge and information. I have primary immunodeficiencies, as well. Specifically, IgG, IgA, Ig1 and Ig2. Hence, I have a specific diagnosis of common variable immunodeficincy (CVID). I have had GI, sinus/respiratory, urinary and skin problems all my life. I wasn’t properly diagnosed until I was 37. I am now 38 and have finally gotten my life back. I have to get I.V.I.g infusions every 3 weeks. It takes an entire day, but it has been worth it. I can be around other people again and not automatically get sick and require 4 to 5 times the normal time it usually takes to recover, sometimes being on multiple antibiotics at a time. I wish I had found your site sooner. Prior to treatment, I had mild non-celiac gluten intolerance and mild lactose intolerance. After treatment, I have a full-blown (but mild!) wheat allergy and a stronger response to lactose. So, I too, like so many, started leaning on rice. In short order, I found out quickly that rice wasn’t doing me any favors. I stopped consuming rice in any form. I am just starting to have some lessening in my symptoms. I am considering asking my doctor to test my arsenic level, as well as my husband’s level. Thank you so much for all the work you do!

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Amie May 11, 2013 at 3:19 pm

Thank you Angie; hope you are feeling better. So great to hear from you. Sending you a HUGE hug! oxox

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Birgit Chow September 13, 2013 at 3:01 am

Hi Amie. I too have an antibody deficiencies from birth and now have CVID. I was not diagnosed till recently but began treatment of IVIg infusions immediately and now do my own at home weekly. I did food allergy and sensitivity testing and avoid gluten, dairy,eggs,corn,all processed food, sugar an and certain fruits and vegetables. I feel much better since I have changed my diet. I cook for my family of three and make adjustments for my dietary needs. I recently came across your site and just want to say thank you. It is great. Sincerely Birgit.

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Amie September 13, 2013 at 8:34 am

Thank you!

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Kristen Barneich January 15, 2014 at 12:14 pm

I was just diagnosed with IgA deficiency yesterday. I’m 43. I have had stomach issues for about 10 years….just pain every now and then, sometimes severe. Thankfully I’m NEVER sick and don’t have any sinus problems. My gut is my concern. I am a vegetarian and have been since 1990. I have been keeping a food log and hope to identify any allergens that stir up my intestines. I tested negative for celiac but I have read that sometimes if you have IgA def. you can get a false positive for celiac. Being sent to a gastro. I will def look into the IGG2000 that you reference. Any more info on possible food allergies w/ IgA would be helpful. Thanks!!!

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Amie January 15, 2014 at 12:50 pm

Thank you Kristen; great to hear from you. Happy to help you; you can email me at TheHealthyApple@gmail.com and we can work together. I can give you information on becoming a client. Thank you again; have a great day!

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