5 million people suffer from Lupus worldwide. In India Lupus is a rare disease. 1 in 1000 people suffer from Lupus, and 90% of them are women.
Lupus is also known as Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. Lupus is an autoimmune disease. Where the immune system forgets its duty and attacks on your cells.
Causes Of Lupus –
The cause of Lupus is unknown. But the thing to remember is Lupus is not contagious.
Lupus can be hereditary in some cases.
Stress, climate, and certain medicines having a connection with Lupus.
Types Of Lupus –
Lupus is mainly of three types –
- Cutaneous Lupus – This type of Lupus shows Malar and discoid rash. These rashes are red without itching.
Rashes mainly on the face, neck, scalp, mouth, and vagina.
- Drug-Induced Lupus – Overall 10% of cases are found in drug-induced lupus. Symptoms are the same as cutaneous lupus. But major organs are involved in this type.
Symptoms disappear within 6 months after discontinuing the medication.
- Neonatal Lupus – This is a rare form of Lupus. Mother with lupus transmits it to the infant.
Diagnosed with rashes on the skin of the baby and low white blood cell counts.
Neonatal lupus disappears after 6 months. But it can give severe defects in the heart.
Risk Group –
Females aged between 15-44 years are at high risk.
African American, Asian, Native American women are more likely to get Lupus.
Symptoms Of Lupus –
- A constant low-grade fever is the main symptom of lupus.
- Butterfly rash on the face is the classical example of cutaneous lupus.
- Almost 80% of lupus patients are having rashes on the palate.
- Lupus patients are sensitive to light and heat.
- Fatigue, lethargy, not enough strength to work.
- Arthralgia or joint pain is a symptom in a few cases.
- Hair loss is a major symptom in lupus patients.
- Drastic weight loss can be seen.
- Raynaud’s or pale and bluishness of fingertips can be seen in some patients.
What is Lupus Nephritis –
When lupus attacks the kidney is known as Lupus Nephritis.
Which is most common in lupus patients.
Kidney leaking protein more than the normal amount, symptomized with swelling on the body.
Most of the time Lupus nephritis remains undiagnosed in the initial stage as it doesn’t show any symptoms.
Clinical examination is most important for the diagnosis of Lupus.
Blood count, Lupus profile, urine routine test, 24 hours urinary protein, and biopsy of the skin or renal biopsy as advised by a rheumatologist.
Treatment Of Lupus –
There is no cure for lupus, but it can be controlled.
Symptomized treatment is preferred by Rheumatologists.
Immunosuppressants are drugs of choice, and if necessary lupus is treated with biologics.
Some rheumatologists use steroids as the line of treatment. Which can give severe side effects like excessive weight gain, unwanted hair growth, reduced bone density, and hampered kidney function in the early stage.
- In lupus skin becomes photosensitive, so avoid exposure to the sun.
- Avoid direct sunlight. Use an umbrella, or cover yourself while going out into direct sunlight.
- Use sunscreen lotion.
- Use mild or chemical-free soap.
- Use hand gloves and socks to protect yourself from the cold.
- Prefer home-cooked food.
- Avoid food with preservatives.
- Take small, frequent meals.
- Daily exercise or brisk walk for 30 minutes.
- Practice stress-free life.
Lupus is an autoimmune disease.
There is no cure for lupus, but you can keep it under control with the help of a rheumatologist.
Consult a physician for any unusual symptoms.