In the Victorian era cryo was simply “vasculitis”. Cryoglobulins were discovered in the late 1930’s. A couple of decades later cryoglobulinemia was named as a form of vasculitis. By the 1950’s people were getting diagnosed with cryo. For a while it was not considered an autoimmune disorder but eventually the industry stuck the label “immune system mediated” on it, and now it is considered an autoimmune disorder. Once it was getting diagnosed in the 1950’s doctors started having a go at treating it. You have to realize that prednisone and immunosuppressants did not come along until the late 1950’s. By the late 60’s and early 70’s patients were getting treated for cryo with increasing success, but from what I’ve seen in the literature, things really started getting a lot better in terms of successful treatment in the early 80’s.
The bottom line is that very little is still known about cryo. What we have now is a suite of treatments that were arrived at by trial and error over a long time. We still don’t know very much abot how cryo works., but if we did , the doctors might actually have better treatments and maybe even a cure. For now, treatment consists largely of tools from cancer chemotherapy and organ transplant procedures to simply hammer the immune system into submission. Truly effective treatment will only be developed when the mechanisms by which cryo works are understood, and that work is yet to be done.
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