Lupus And Arthritic Tendencies

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, also known as lupus, is a chronic, potentially debilitating or fatal autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the body's cells and tissue. This results in inflammation and tissue damage. Lupus can affect any part of the body but tends to harm the heart, joints, skin, lungs, blood vessels and the brain and nervous system. Although people with the disease may have many different symptoms, some of the most common ones include extreme fatigue, painful or swollen joints (arthritis), unexplained fever, skin rashes, and kidney problems. While the disease is treatable, there is currently no known cure for it.

Prognosis is generally worse for men and children than it is for women. However, more women have the disease. It is also three times more common in African American, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American women than in Caucasian women. Lupus does run in families, but the risk factor is usually low. If symptoms are developed after age 60, the disease has been known to run a more benign course.

Advances in diagnosis and treatment have improved the survival rate of sufferers in recent years. In the 1950s, most patients diagnosed with the disease had a survival expectancy of five years. Although there is no cure for lupus, it can effectively be treated with drugs, which allows most people with the disease to be able to lead active, healthy lives. Lupus is characterized by periods of illness and periods of wellness. These periods are referred to as flares and remission, respectively.

The exact cause of lupus is unknown. Doctors and researchers have not reached a consensus on whether it is a single condition or group of related diseases. There are three ways that lupus is thought to develop. They are genetic predisposition, environmental causes, and drug reaction. The first cause, genetics, is not certain but only indicated by research. Several genes need to be affected for lupus to occur, in particular the ones on chromosome 6. However, these mutations may occur either randomly or be inherited.

Lupus may also be brought on by environmental factors. These factors may include medications such as antidepressants and antibiotics, extreme stress, exposure to sunlight, hormones and infections. Drug-induced lupus is a form of the disease that is caused by medications. Symptoms of this form are similar to those of systemic lupus erythematosus, such as arthritis, rash, fever and chest pain. However, they typically stop when the drug is done being taken.

Overall, patients do not need to let lupus run their lives. Ask your doctors about more information about this disease-with optimism and a devotion to treatment you can overcome this disease.

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