Lupus is an autoimmune disorder that can affect organs, the skin, and joints. This autoimmune disease causes the body’s immune system to think that its body’s tissues are pathogens. This causes the immune system to attack healthy tissues which causes chronic inflammation. Lupus has a large variety of symptoms and these symptoms often mimic those of other diseases. It also may be difficult to diagnose because lupus symptoms can vary between individuals.
Generally, lupus involves a period of high activity, known as a flare. After this, there is a period of less noticeable symptoms.
Lupus often imitates symptoms of the flu. One may experience fevers during lupus flares. These fevers don’t tend to exceed more than 102F.
Lupus Symptoms Exposed
Usually, lupus causes the immune system to attack the tissues of the joints, skin, kidneys, lungs, and heart. Lupus is more common in women than men and is more likely to affect ethic groups such as African-American women as well as those with Asian descent.
Lupus symptoms can also cause pain as well as muscle weakness. Muscle weakness can occur in the hips, hands, wrists, knees, ankles, and feet. The muscles weaken because of the nerve damage that occurs after chronic inflammation. Muscle weakness may also be accompanied by muscle pain, joint pain, and swelling of the joints (arthritis). The pain can affect any joint of the body and can cause redness and swelling.
Another common symptom of lupus is fatigue. Those with lupus find that they are low on energy and always feeling tired.
Skin problems occur in over 90% of people with lupus. This type of lupus is known as cutaneous lupus. Generally, skin lupus affects Caucasians more than other ethnic groups.
The most common lupus rash is known as the “butterfly rash”. This rash will affect the cheeks and nose, resembling the shape of a butterfly. The rash may be minor or quite severe. However, rashes are not only limited to these areas and can spread to the ears, scalp, arms, or chest. Rashes on the scalp may result in hair loss, but hair is able to regrow after a flare.
Lupus also often attacks certain organs, such as the kidneys, stomach, intestines, and liver. This can cause a development of ulcers in the body. Sores that occur on the mouth or nose generally do not cause pain.
The many different lupus symptoms can make the disease difficult to diagnose. Your physician will be able to determine if you have lupus or not.
Lupus Symptoms Video