Lupus (SLE or systemic lupus erythematosus) is a chronic autoimmune disease that can damage any part of the body and there is no cure for it. The simplest way to think of it is your immune system attacks the body. Lupus can range from mild to life-threatening.
Lupus can be very difficult to diagnose. I was diagnosed while pregnant with my son and even then they were hesitant to say I definitely had it because I didn’t have any other symptoms. However, here are some common symptoms associated with lupus:
1. A persistent fever
2. Chest pain, especially when inhaling deeply
3. Persistent fatigue
4. Butterfly rash on the face
5. Sores in the mouth and nose
7. Arthritis/Joint pain
8. Strong sensitivity to light
9. Hair loss
10. Reynaud’s Phenomenon –this is a condition that causes your fingers and toes to turn blue or white when they are cold.
If you have been diagnosed with lupus, you should seek regular check ups from your rheumatologist. If you suspect you may have lupus, talk to your doctor and ask to be tested. Lastly, pay attention to your body. These symptoms do not occur all at once. They will pop up out of nowhere, possibly get better after a while and then another symptom will present itself.
It helps to know your body and don’t let any doctor dismiss your symptoms and concerns. BE VIGILANT it’s your body and your health! You can visit www.lupus.org and www.webmd.com/lupus for more information.