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WHO CARES: Chronic Illness in America
WHO CARES: Chronic Illness in America

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Lupus

Description: Lupus is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system becomes hyperactive and attacks the body's own cells, resulting in inflammation.

Symptoms: Diagnosis is difficult, as symptoms mimic less serious illnesses. Lupus can cause severe joint and muscle pain, extreme exhaustion, fevers and skin rashes, and can lead to organ failure and death.

Number of Americans diagnosed: Lupus affects approximately 1.4 million Americans, striking mostly young women of childbearing age, with the highest prevalence among African-Americans, Hispanics, Asians and Native-Americans.

Long-term problems/treatments: For the vast majority of people with lupus, effective treatment can minimize symptoms, reduce inflammation, and maintain normal bodily functions. Preventive measures can include regular exercise, immunization against specific infections, and avoidance of excessive sun exposure. Medications are often prescribed for people with lupus, including non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, acetaminophen, and corticosteroids. The exact cause of lupus remains unclear, and there is no cure.
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Lupus Foundation of America

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Living With Lupus


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