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What is Lupus, What are the Symptoms & Treatment?

31 Mar, 2023 Sandra Sayer

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                               Lupus is a disease which occurs when your body’s immune system attacks your own tissues and organs (autoimmune disease.) Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease which arises from an abnormal immune response to a functioning body part. Some of the more common autoimmune diseases include type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus and inflammatory bowel disease. It is a disease of flare-ups which can affect any organ in your body and the symptoms differ from person to person. One person may suffer with fatigue while another person may have kidney or other organ problems, or swollen knees and fever. Another person may have rashes. New symptoms can develop, and other symptoms may occur less often, or they may come and go. Because lupus symptoms come and go there may be times when there are no symptoms, or the symptoms may cause illness symptoms and/or remissions (when the person feels better.) Lupus is more common among women of childbearing age (ages 15 to 44 years.) Lupus symptoms may include joint pain noted in up to 95 percent of patients with Lupus. These symptoms could mimic many other skeletal, neurological or peripheral vascular disease so it is imperative the person undergo the necessary tests to obtain the correct diagnosis. Because early symptoms are like other conditions, if you have them doesn’t mean you have Lupus. Early symptoms include: ➢ Fatigue ➢ Fever ➢ Hair loss ➢ Rash ➢ Lung or breathing problems ➢ Kidney problems ➢ Swollen joints ➢ GI (gastrointestinal) problems ➢ Thyroid problems ➢ Dry mouth and eyes ➢ And other symptoms DIAGNOSIS AND TREATING LUPUS Tell your doctor if lupus or other autoimmune diseases run in your family. A complete physical exam will assist the doctor, blood and urine tests. The antinuclear antibody (ANA) test can show if your immune system is more likely to make the autoantibodies of lupus. There are lupus support groups. One of those groups is Lupus Foundation of America. www.lupus.org/resources/common-symptoms. THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for informational purposes only. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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