Lupus is a problematic condition that can affect a number of organs within the human body. Living with lupus can therefore be a disconcerting experience for lupus patients. Diagnosis of this illness is quite difficult as there is no single test that can definitely help in making the diagnosis. Lupus causes problems like joint and muscle pain, fatigue, hair loss, rash and mouth ulcers. The severity of the symptoms and the problems in this condition are varied in different cases.
Lupus is basically a rheumatic problem that affects as many as 1.5 million people in United States. Lupus affects the immune system and in this problem the immune system attacks the tissue in the body. In a healthy individual antibodies are produced and these protect the body against viruses and bacteria against infections. With lupus however the immune system cannot differentiate between healthy cells and the viruses and bacteria. Living with lupus can therefore be quite problematic.
Some factors that can cause this condition include genetics, extreme stress, and use of certain medications, estrogen and infection. Lupus is also far more commonly observed among females as compared to males. Among different communities Asian American individuals, Latinos, Native Americans and African American individuals are observed to be suffering and living with lupus.
The three kinds of lupus include systemic lupus erythematosus, discoid lupus and drug induced lupus. Individuals living with lupus experience multiple problems like malar rash which a rash that is seen to be spread across the cheeks. Other problems in lupus include mouth and nose ulcers, sensitivity to light resulting in rash, kidney problems, arthritis etc.
Also those living with lupus also experience, weakness, weight loss, fever, muscle loss, hair loss and even abdominal pain. While there is no definite cure for this condition managing this illness is possible if appropriate care is taken. Caring for the illness requires a person to avoid all those things that will result in flare ups.
Patients living with lupus have to take medications. These may include corticosteroids to control the inflammation along with other drugs to control the joint and the muscle pain. Anti malarial drugs are taken to deal with the joint pain along with the skin rashes. In some cases where kidney problems may be involved immunosuppressive drugs may be required to be taken,
Patients living with lupus need to change their lifestyle to manage this condition. Taking adequate rest is needed. Likewise patients should avoid excessive sun exposure and wear sunscreen agents along with protective clothing. Regular exercise is also crucial and helps in preventing joint stiffness and fatigue. A balanced diet can also help in maintaining good health.
Any kind of stress should be strictly avoided. Anything that triggers flare ups should be identified and consciously avoided. It is also advisable to avoid contact with individuals who have any kind of infection. Smoking can be problematic if you are suffering from lupus and so it should be given up. It is advisable that medical professionals are regularly updated about the condition and the treatment plan should be religiously followed.