What is lupus—and how does it affect the body?
Lupus is a complex chronic autoimmune disorder that can affect the brain, skin, joints, lungs, kidneys, and blood vessels, causing inflammation and damage in organs and tissue.
Who is at risk for developing lupus?
Women are at the highest risk, but lupus can affect everyone. It’s most commonly diagnosed in Black, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American women.
Are there different types of lupus?
The most common type of lupus is Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE). People with SLE may experience fatigue, pain, rashes, joint swelling, and fever. Other types of lupus include Cutaneous, Drug-induced, and Neonatal Lupus.
What are lupus symptoms?
- Extreme fatigue (feeling tired all the time)
- Pain or swelling in joints
- Swelling in hands, feet, or around the eyes
- Low fevers
- Sensitivity to sunlight or fluorescent light
- Chest pain when breathing deeply
- Butterfly-shaped rash on the cheeks and nose
- Hair loss
- Sores in mouth or nose
- Fingers and toes turning white or blue and feeling numb when a person is cold or stressed (Raynaud’s Disease)
How do patients receive treatment for lupus?
After receiving a lupus diagnosis, your primary healthcare provider will likely be a rheumatologist, who provides care for people with arthritis and other disorders involving joint swelling and inflammation.
Your rheumatologist will develop a treatment plan that may include routine infusion therapy to prevent and treat flare-ups; reduce joint damage, swelling, and pain; balance hormones; and build up your immune system.
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