Within Cleveland Clinic's Respiratory Institute, the Sarcoidosis Center serves as a single point of access for patients to receive the best care for their condition. With innovative methods of care, research and technology, we are committed to providing the most comprehensive care to patients with single and multi-organ disease involvement.

A Team Approach

Sarcoidosis often affects more than one organ, so patients may need to see more than one type of physician. At the Sarcoidosis Center, we make sure patients quickly see the best doctors for their case by using a multidisciplinary approach. Our team of doctors, who have expertise and an interest in sarcoidosis, includes specialists in pulmonology, cardiology, electrophysiology, neurology, ophthalmology, dermatology and rheumatology.

At Cleveland Clinic's Sarcoidosis Center, we:

  • offer individualized patient care with access to a spectrum of specialists
  • provide cutting-edge testing including advanced diagnostic bronchoscopies for complicated sarcoidosis cases, such as cardiac sarcoidosis, as well as small-fiber neuropathy and neurosarcoidosis through our Neurosarcoidosis Clinic
  • minimize the degree to which sarcoidosis can affect quality of life for patients
  • conduct research to understand the disease process of sarcoidosis and to find alternative treatments for care
Health Information

Health Information

Sarcoidosis is a common and potentially severe disorder. Approximately 60 to 70 percent of patients with sarcoidosis will experience mild symptoms with a quick recovery. Other patients will develop long-term complications with little or no response to conventional steroidal therapy.

Anyone can get sarcoidosis, but the disease is found more commonly in African-Americans and affects individuals of Irish, German, Scandinavian, and Puerto Rican descent.

More Information

Learn more about sarcoidosis symptoms, causes and risks, diagnostic tests and procedures, treatments, and wellness tips.

Free Guide to Sarcoidosis

Watch our In-Depth Videos and Download Your Free Guide to Sarcoidosis from Cleveland Clinic's Sarcoidosis Center of Excellence.

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Healthy Reminders

When was your last pneumonia shot?

Pneumonia shots are needed every five to seven years.

Are you taking steroids for more than six months?

Remind your doctor to order your bone density test.

Are you getting enough sleep?

Research has shown that proper amounts of sleep and exercise along with a nutritiously balanced diet result in a body that is in top form, physically, mentally and spiritually.

Web Resources




Research & Clinical Trials

Research & Clinical Trials

Sarcoidosis Clinical Trials

Nicotine Treatment for Pulmonary Sarcoidosis: A Clinical Trial Pilot Study

The objective of this NIH-supported study is to determine if nicotine treatment is safe and efficacious for patients with active pulmonary disease despite conventional therapy. ELIGIBILITY: Patients 18-75 years old with histologically proven sarcoidosis, evidence of parenchymal disease; evidence of active lung disease based on a 5% change in FVC, TLC or DLCO within the past year; and a Medical Research Council dyspnea score of at least grade 1. Confirmation of active pulmonary sarcoidosis as the cause of worsening pulmonary disease manifestations will be established by the sarcoidosis experts at the site. Patients must be on no treatment or on a stable treatment regimen for sarcoidosis. Exclusion criteria include recent treatment with an anti-TNF-alpha therapy (infliximab, adalimumab, etanercept, etc.), active tobacco smoking or use of smokeless tobacco products containing nicotine, active cardiac or central nervous system disease, history of adverse reaction to nicotine or nicotine-containing products, extensive irreversible pulmonary fibrosis, and inability to provide consent. The patient will be excluded if he or she has a smoking history of greater than 25 pack years, recent (within one year) active smoking or a diagnosis of other significant respiratory disorder other than sarcoidosis that in the opinion of the investigator would complicate the evaluation of response to treatment, or history of substance abuse (drugs or alcohol) within 3 years prior to screening or other circumstances (e.g., psychiatric disease) that could interfere with the subject’s adherence to protocol requirements or increase his or her risk of drug (nicotine) dependence. Patients with a diagnosis of current or recently active cancer (within 1 year) will be excluded.

STUDY COORDINATOR: JoAnne Baran-Smiley, BSN, RN | 216.444.5023

A multiple-dose, subject-and investigator-blinded placebo-controlled, parallel design study to assess the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of ACZ885 (canakinumab) in patients with pulmonary sarcoidosis

Sponsored by Novarits this is Phase II trial investigating the effect of ACZ885 versus placebo on the clinical disease activity of sarcoidosis patients as measured by the change from baseline in percent predicted forced vial capacity (FVC) at week 24.

ELIGIBILITY: Must be between the ages of 18 to 80 with biopsy-proven, clinically active disease having all of the following criteria: 1. MMRC dyspnea scale >1, 2. Threshold FVC 50-80% of predicted, 3. Evidence of parenchymal lung involvement by HRCT. Subjects must weigh at least 50kg. Subjects must be able to communicate well with the investigator and to understand and comply with the requirements of the study. Disease duration of > 1 year. Selected Exclusion criteria: Current inhaled use of tobacco products. Known hypersensitivity to canakinumab. Prior treatment with any biologic drug targeting the immune system within 180 days of randomization or history of any previous use of rituximab. Forced vital capacity (FVC) <50% of predicted. Diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension requiring treatment.

STUDY COORDINATOR: Jenna Brinker | 216.445.5836

ACTHAR Therapy for Central Nervous System Sarcoidosis

Supported by Mallinckrodt ARD, this study aims to provide evidence that ACTHAR gel may serve as a therapeutic immune-modulating alternative to glucocorticoids in patients with moderate to severe neurosarcoidosis.

ELIGIBILITY: Patients with sarcoidosis as defined by ATS/ERS/WASOG criteria who have moderate to severe CNS sarcoidosis; Enhancing CNS lesions, including intracranial and spinal cord lesions; Elevated protein, pleocytosis, IgG synthesis or oligoclonal bands in the CSF; Neurologic biopsy showing active granulomatous inflammation.

STUDY COORDINATOR: JoAnne Baran-Smiley, BSN, RN | 216.444.5023

Development of an On-Line Sarcoidosis Assessment Platform (OSAP) to Validate Sarcoidosis Phenotypes and Monitor Disease Burden Longitudinally

Sponsored by the Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research this study looks to establish an on-line sarcoidosis assessment platform (OSAP) that can evaluate health related quality of life and psychosocial issues of sarcoidosis in real time in a prospective fashion.

ELIGIBILITY: Diagnosis of sarcoidosis by established criteria; Completed pulmonary function tests (spirometry) as per standard of care; Have access to a computer, iPad, smart phone, or another electronic device that will support the on-line sarcoidosis assessment platform; Willing to wear a daily activity and sleep tracker wristband (Fitbit ™ wristband) for 6 months.

STUDY COORDINATOR: Allison Wimer, RRT | 216.444.9975

Investigation of the Efficacy of Antimycobacterial Therapy on Pulmonary Sarcoidosis Phase II Randomized, DoubleBlind, Placebo-Controlled Trial (CLEAR)

The objective of this NIH-supported study is to assess the efficacy and safety of oral CLEAR therapy in patients with confirmed progressive pulmonary sarcoidosis. ELIGIBILITY: Selected inclusion criteria include patients with sarcoidosis as defined by the ATS/ERS/WASOG statement on sarcoidosis; biopsy demonstrating granulomas, and no alternative for the cause of the granulomas; evidence of disease progression; positive peripheral immune responses to ESAT-6 as a biomarker of response to the CLEAR regimen; possess evidence of parenchymal or nodal disease on chest radiograph.

STUDY COORDINATOR: Allison Wimer, RRT | 216.445.9557

Ocular Sarcoidosis: Open Label Trial of ACTHAR Gel

Sponsored by Questcor, this study will investigate whether treatment with ACTHAR Gel will result in a reduction of ocular inflammation in patients with active ocular sarcoidosis that requires systemic immunosuppressant therapy. ELIGIBILITY: Selected inclusion criteria include patients with sarcoidosis as defined by ATS/ERS/WASOG guidelines; any posterior, intermediate or panuveitis of sufficient severity to warrant therapy, in the opinion of the treating physician OR anterior uveitis requiring 4 or more daily applications of topical corticosteroids to maintain control of inflammation, or uncontrolled with topical therapy; persistent disease activity (active uveitis) at the time of screening.

STUDY COORDINATOR: JoAnne Baran-Smiley, BSN, RN | 216.444.5023

A Multicenter, Open-Label study to Estimate the Effect Sizes of HRCT Endpoints in Response to the Glucocorticoid Induction Therapy in Subjects with Pulmonary Sarcoidosis.

Sponsored by Celgene Corporation, this is an open label trial to estimate the effect size of change from baseline in high resolution computed tomography (HRCT)-based measurements of lobar volumes at functional residual capacity (FRC), total lung capacity (TLC), and airway wall thickness in response to glucocorticoid induction therapy (eg, prednisone or prednisolone) in subjects with pulmonary sarcoidosis.

ELIGIBILITY: Subjects between 18-65 years of age with biopsy proven sarcoidosis, radiographic stage II or III disease, MRC grade >1, and FVC of 45%-80% on pulmonary function test.

STUDY COORDINATOR: Allison Wimer, RRT | 216.444.9975

A Phase 4 Multicenter, Randomized, Double Blind, Placebo Controlled Pilot Study to Assess the Efficacy and Safety of H.P. Acthar Gel in Subjects with Pulmonary Sarcoidosis

Sponsored by Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals, this is Phase IV trial investigating the effect of Acthar Gel versus placebo on the clinical disease activity of pulmonary sarcoidosis patients. There is an open label phase to this trial. ELIGIBILITY: Subjects must be between 18-90 years of age with a biopsy confirmed diagnosis of pulmonary sarcoidosis. Subjects must have symptomatic pulmonary disease defined as one of the following: decrease of 5% in the best available FVC, progression in chest imaging, needing an increase in antisarcoidosis therapy, and a dyspnea with MRC scale of > 1. Subjects must also be on prednisone of >5mg-<40mg.

STUDY COORDINATOR: Allison Wimer, RRT | 216.445.9557

Recommended Research Readings

Below is a list of recent peer-reviewed research articles about sarcoidosis written by Cleveland Clinic doctors and staff.

For Medical Professionals

For Medical Professionals

Patient Referrals

Our secure online service, Dr.Connect, provides referring physicians access to patient’s treatment progress with streamlined communication from Cleveland Clinic physicians to your office, allowing continued participation in the ongoing care of patients. With the best possible treatment plans and coordinated care, our team approach benefits both the patient and the referring physician.


Committed to informing the medical community of advances and discoveries about sarcoidosis, the Cleveland Clinic Sarcoidosis Center provides opportunities for physicians, respiratory therapists, nurses, and physician assistants to learn about current clinical care and research activities through its online presentations, seminars and health talks.

Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Fellowships

Our pulmonary and critical care medicine fellowships provide board-certified general internists with the tools necessary to care for patients, who have complicated lung diseases and critical illnesses. During the three-year training period, which includes an 18-month core program and 18-month subspecialty track, fellows are exposed to a wide variety of medical problems in both the inpatient and outpatient settings.


Cleveland Clinic Respiratory Institute offers continuing medical education courses through the Center for Continuing Education. We are providers of AMA-approved continuing medical education (CME) units for physicians and physician assistants, and of continuing education units by the Ohio Nurses Association for nurses and by the Ohio Respiratory Care Board for respiratory therapists.


Recommended Readings

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