Everything You Should Know About Lupus
Lupus is an autoimmune disease that affects people of all ages and genders. It can be hard to diagnose, as symptoms can vary from person to person. Today, we’ll discuss the basics of the condition—what it is, what causes it, and how it is treated.
What Is Lupus?
It is an autoimmune disorder characterized by inflammation in areas of the body such as the joints and organs. In lupus, your immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells and tissues instead of only attacking invading germs or foreign substances. This leads to inflammation in the affected areas, which can cause pain, swelling, stiffness, and other physical symptoms.
What Causes Lupus?
The exact cause of lupus is unknown; however, there are certain factors that may increase someone’s risk for developing this autoimmune disorder. These include genetic predisposition (having a family history of the condition), environmental factors such as exposure to UV light or certain medications like antibiotics and antimalarial drugs, hormonal changes due to pregnancy or menopause, or having another type of autoimmune disorder such as rheumatoid arthritis or psoriasis.
What are the Symptoms of Lupus
Symptoms of lupus can vary from mild to severe and range from fatigue to inflammation in the joints, organs, and other areas of the body. Some common symptoms include skin rashes or lesions that are sensitive to sunlight, joint pain and stiffness, hair loss, fever, swollen lymph nodes, chest pain, anemia (low red blood cell count), and abnormal blood clotting. Lupus can also cause kidney damage, as well as neurological problems such as seizures and vision loss.
How Is It Treated?
Treatment for lupus depends on the severity of the condition and the individual’s specific symptoms. Generally speaking, treatments focus on reducing inflammation with medications such as corticosteroids or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). In more severe cases, immunosuppressive medications may be prescribed to reduce the activity of an overactive immune system. Additionally, lifestyle modifications can help reduce flare-ups such as getting adequate rest and avoiding activities that may trigger a flare-up.
Living with lupus can be challenging but proper management and treatment can help you live a normal life despite having this chronic illness. If you think you might have lupus, talk to your doctor about your symptoms so they can provide you with an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan tailored to your needs. Additionally stay informed about new research developments in treatments so that you are always up-to-date with current information about this autoimmune disorder. With enough knowledge about this condition under your belt and proper care from your healthcare provider(s), living with it doesn’t have to be overwhelming!