Healthy wikihow | Health Tips – Health News

Breaking News

Lupus SLE Treatment, Causes and Symptoms

Lupus SLE Treatment, Causes and Symptoms
Lupus SLE Treatment, Causes and Symptoms

What is SLE lupus?

SLE Lupus is an autoimmune disease, which means that the immune system, your body's defense system, produces antibodies that attack the body's own tissues, causing inflammation. There are two main types of lupus:
  • discoid lupus

  • The systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).
These pages focus on SLE, which is often just known as lupus.

Who gets lupus?

Lupus is:

  • about nine times as common in women as in men

  • more common in younger people – only about 1 in 15 cases begin after the age of 50, when it tends to be less severe

  • more common in women of Chinese origin

  • most common in women of African or Caribbean origin. It tends to be more severe in people of Afro-Caribbean origin.

lupus Causes

Normal variations (polymorphisms) in many genes can affect the risk of developing SLE, and in most cases, multiple genetic factors are thought to be involved. In rare cases, SLE is caused by mutations in single genes. Most of the genes associated with SLE are involved in immune system function, and variations in these genes likely affect proper targeting and control of the immune response. Sex hormones and a variety of environmental factors including viral infections, diet, stress, chemical exposures, and sunlight are also thought to play a role in triggering this complex disorder. About 10 percent of SLE cases are thought to be triggered by drug exposure, and more than 80 drugs that may be involved have been identified.

In people with SLE, cells that have undergone self-destruction (apoptosis) because they are damaged or no longer needed are not cleared away properly. The relationship of this loss of function to the cause or features of SLE is unclear. Researchers suggest that these dead cells may release substances that cause the immune system to react inappropriately and attack the body's tissues, resulting in the signs and symptoms of SLE.

lupus Symptoms

The symptoms of lupus occur in times of flare-ups. Between flare-ups, people usually experience times of remission, when there are few or no symptoms.

Lupus has a wide range of symptoms, including:

  • fatigue

  • a loss of appetite and weight loss

  • pain or swelling in joints and muscles

  • swelling in the legs or around the eyes

  • swollen glands, or lymph nodes

  • skin rashes, due to bleeding under the skin

  • mouth ulcers

  • sensitivity to the sun

  • fever

  • headaches

  • chest pain upon deep breathing

  • unusual hair loss

  • pale or purple fingers or toes from cold or stress (Raynaud's phenomenon)

  • arthritis
  • Lupus Treatment

People are living longer and better with lupus than ever before. Although there's no cure for lupus, there are treatments and lifestyle changes that can help you manage your symptoms.

Treatment for lupus -- also known as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) -- depends on your symptoms and how severe they are. Treatment can help:

  • Ease your symptoms

  • Bring down inflammation

  • Prevent and relieve flares

  • Prevent organ damage and other health problems

Anti-Inflammatory Drugs

If you have lupus, you may have joint pain and swelling, especially in your fingers, wrists, or knees. Sometimes you may have a fever. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen or naproxen, can usually help you ease both of those problems.

You can buy them without a prescription. Sometimes they can irritate your stomach, so take them with food or milk. Also be aware that using NSAIDs, especially at higher doses increase your risk for heart attack or stroke.

Antimalarial Drugs

Some medications used to treat malaria can also treat lupus. They are used to treat skin rashes, mouth sores, and joint pain. They may also reduce your risk of blood clots, which is a concern in some people with lupus.

Antimalarial drugs protect against skin damage from ultraviolet rays in sunlight and may protect your body against organ damage linked to lupus. Side effects like stomach upset tend to be rare and mild.


Lupus makes parts of your immune system overactive, so it attacks healthy tissue by mistake. Corticosteroids weaken this immune response. Your doctor may prescribe them if lupus causes problems in your heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, or blood vessels.

Taken as a pill or IV, corticosteroids work fast to ease the swelling, warmth, and soreness in joints caused by inflammation. They can also prevent long-term organ damage.

Corticosteroids can have serious side effects like:

  • Greater chance of infections

  • Fragile bones or bone damage, especially in the hip

  • Muscle weakness

  • Diabetes

  • Cataracts
You may also have weight gain, bloating, and mood changes from taking corticosteroids. So your doctor will likely give you the lowest dose possible and taper them off if your symptoms go away for a time.

No comments