Lupus Flares: Recognizing one, triggers, and prevention
Unpredictable and debilitating bouts with symptoms of the disease are known as flares.
At times lupus patients may have periods with few to no symptoms, commonly called remissions. Some physicians are uncomfortable with the term “remission” as lupus symptoms rarely disappear completely. They may, instead, choose to use the term “quiescence” (pronounced: kwee-ess-ence.) At other times the patient may have high disease activity which include unpredictable and debilitating bouts with symptoms of the disease.
Flares can be classified as mild, moderate, or severe. For example: A mild flare could perhaps be signaled by a lupus rash, moderate flares could include the rash, fatigue, and joint or muscle pain, and severe flares could potentially cause damage to the organs including fluid buildup around the heart or even kidney disease or failure (called lupus nephritis), which would require immediate medical attention. Back to top
So how is a lupus flare recognized?
Most lupus patients will have symptoms of muscle and joint pain as well as fatigue regularly, so what makes a flare different? Here are some warning signs of a pending lupus flare:
It is important to report any of these with your medical caregiver as soon as possible so that they can quickly assess and treat any symptoms that could signal a flare. Keeping a daily symptom journal can be a helpful tool. Back to top
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There is also a considerable amount of research showing that vitamin D deficiency has been associated with several autoimmune diseases including multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, type 1 diabetes mellitus, and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).
Vitamin D3 is Important in Autoimmune Disorders
Vitamin D has a well-established role in calcium metabolism and bone health, but recently there has been a great deal of research looking at the effect of vitamin D on other body tissues, especially immune cells. It is now known that there are vitamin D receptors (VDRs) located in the nuclei of all immune cells, including antigen-presenting cells, natural killer cells, and B and T lymphocytes. There is also a considerable amount of research showing that vitamin D deficiency has been associated with several autoimmune diseases including multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, type 1 diabetes mellitus, and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).
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KNOW LUPUS Public Service Announcement – 60 Second Version
“TAME THE WOLF AND TAKE CONTROL’
The word ‘lupus’ originated from the Latin word ‘wolf’. It’s attributed to a 19th century physician who used it to describe rashes or scarred irritations on the skin of his patients that looked like the bite of a wolf.
The wolf is considered as a ferocious animal which ravages just like lupus does.
Lupus is life – threatening, unpredictable and can damage organs in the body.
Living with lupus is like living with a wolf in the inside. Do we allow the wolf (lupus) to ravage our bodies or find ways of taming it?
Taming the wolf involves taking measures to ensure we keep lupus under control.
Together we can make a difference by joining forces to educate lupus warriors and the public about Lupus.
You can also find us at Facebook at Lupus My Invisible Companion. And on Twitter at. LupusMICompanion @LupusCompanion
Getting diagnosed with lupus is scary and upsetting enough without the added stress of potential hair loss. The physical ramifications of what systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) can do to the body internally are indeed very scary. But the emotional toll of looking in the mirror and seeing a dramatic change in our external appearance is just one more thing that can make living with lupus more difficult. So, can lupus cause hair loss? The simple answer is, unfortunately, yes. Because lupus causes widespread inflammation throughout the body, many times it can also involve your skin-which is the largest organ of the body. Inflammation of the skin can result in rashes or even hair loss occurring most often on the face and scalp. The medical term for hair loss is alopecia. It is usually described as hair noticeably thinning orHair loss problem with hairbrush falling out in clumps or in patches. Although a few people with lupus will lose clumps of hair, the disease can also cause gradual thinning of the hair on your scalp. It is also possible to notice loss of hair of the eyelashes, eyebrows, beard or body. There are two main types of alopecia: scarring and non-scarring. Scarring means that the hair follicles have been destroyed by inflammation (and thus there is no chance of hair re-growth). Discoid lupus is one major cause of scarring alopecia. However, if caught early enough (before scarring takes place), it is possible to see hair regrowth. Non-scarring means that the hair follicles are still present and hair regrowth is possible. Hair loss can be one of the first signs or symptoms of lupus. Approximately half of lupus patients will experience at least some form of lupus hair loss and alopecia. This often occurs at the beginning of the disease but can also appear along with certain medications and treatments that may be prescribed to manage more serious lupus symptoms. Back to top
To read more please go to Lupus Hair Loss and Alopecia Explained