What is Lupus
Lupus is a chronic inflammatory autoimmune disease. There are three common types of lupus.
- Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) is the most serious. SLE can affect almost any organ or system in the body including blood vessels, muscles, joints, the digestive tract, lungs, kidneys, heart and central nervous system.
- Discoid lupus causes a raised, scaly, red rash, usually on the face, scalp and neck and may cause scarring.
- Drug-induced lupus is a type of lupus which is caused by prescription medications. Symptoms are similar to those of SLE; and once the medication is stopped, the symptoms usually cease.
- Neonatal lupus is a rare disease that can affect some newborn babies of women with SLE or certain other immune system disorders. These babies may have a heart defect, skin rash, low blood count, and/or liver problems. However, most infants of mothers with SLE are born healthy.
Lupus is an autoimmune disease that can affect almost every organ in the body. Symptoms of lupus can range from very mild to life-threatening. There are three main types of lupus; systemic lupus erythematosus, discoid lupus, and drug-induced lupus. Symptoms may include pain or swelling in joints, muscle pain, fever, red rashes, most often on the face (also called the “butterfly rash”), hair loss, chest pain, sensitivity to the sun, swelling in legs or around the eyes, and feeling tired. Genetics is thought to play a role in the development of lupus along with other lifestyle and environmental factors. Studies suggest that a number of different genes may be involved in determining a person’s likelihood of developing the disease, which tissues and organs are affected, and the severity of disease. Lupus is more common in young women. The treatment of lupus depends on the severity of the condition and what parts of the body are affected. Treatment may include acetaminophen, ibuprofen, antimalarial drugs, anti-inflammatory steroids, immunosuppressive drugs, and other such as BLyS-specific inhibitors (Belimumab).
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