Overview

Hypereosinophilic (hy-per-ee-o-SIN-o-phil-ik) syndrome (HES) is a group of blood disorders that occur when you have high numbers of eosinophils — white blood cells that play an important role in your immune system. Over time, the excess eosinophils enter various tissues, eventually damaging your organs.

The most common targets are the skin, lungs, digestive tract, heart, blood and nervous system. Untreated, HES can become life-threatening.

HES can affect anyone. But it occurs more often in men, usually between the ages of 20 and 50.

Symptoms

Symptoms vary, depending on what part of your body is affected. Skin signs and symptoms include itching and rashes. If your lungs are affected, you may be short of breath and have a cough.