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Is Lupus Fatal? — an article on the Smart Living Network
February 20, 2008 at 10:22 AMComments: 3 Faves: 0

Is Lupus Fatal?

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Lupus is an autoimmune disorder; it's not cancer, and it's not HIV. Lupus is a misunderstood disease, so if you or a loved one has recently been diagnosed with lupus, you might be afraid or confused. Be sure to talk to your health practitioner if you have questions.

Is Lupus Fatal?

Not usually. 80-90% of people with lupus will live a normal lifespan. However, since there are varying degrees of severity of lupus, some people may have their lifespan reduced. The most common causes of death that may be traced to lupus are kidney failure, infection, and heart disease. However, in most cases, lupus is not life-threatening.

Is There a Cure for Lupus?

Unfortunately, there is no cure for lupus. However, there are many treatment strategies that can effectively manage symptoms .

Is Lupus the Same as Multiple Sclerosis?

No, although both are autoimmune diseases, Lupus and MS are very different conditions. Sometimes lupus can imitate the symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis, however.

How Dangerous Is Lupus for Children?

Lupus research and treatment has come a long way recently. The prognosis for children is usually good, although not as good as that for adults.

Who Gets Lupus?

  • 9 out of 10 sufferers are female.
  • Lupus is more common in African Americans, Native Americans, Asians, and Hispanics. However, anyone of any ethnic background can get lupus.
  • Lupus is usually diagnosed between the ages of 15 and 45.
  • It's thought that a predisposition for the disease is inherited genetically, and lupus itself is triggered by an environmental factor in a person with a predisposition. Possible triggers are viruses, medications, or Epstein-Barr virus.

Is Lupus Contagious?

No, lupus is never contagious. It's a result of the person's immune system attacking the body's own tissues, not from a bacteria or virus.

What Is the Link Between Lupus and Osteoporosis?

  • Women with lupus are almost five times more likely to fracture a bone than women without lupus due to osteoporosis.
  • Lupus may cause bone loss directly.
  • Often, medications used to treat lupus can cause major bone loss.
  • Additionally, lupus causes fatigue, which may result in inactivity, which can lead to bone loss.
  • If you have lupus, it's important to monitor your bone health and live an active, healthy lifestyle. Make sure you are getting enough calcium and exercise to maintain healthy bones.

What Treatments Are Available for Lupus?

Many medications are available for treatment of lupus, although these may come with unpleasant side effects. The following tips will help you stay healthy:

  • Stay Active: Even if you are tired, you should try to get some exercise each day.
  • Eat a Healthy Diet: Fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and omega-3 fatty acids found in flax seeds and fish oil are thought to help people who suffer from lupus.
  • Don't Smoke or Abuse Alcohol: Both of these are harmful for the body and can be especially bad for lupus sufferers.

Sources:

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/lupus.html

www.lupus.org

http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Bone/Osteoporosis/Conditions_Behaviors/osteoporosis_lupus.asp

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3 Comments

  • i would like to know the life span of a 56 years old black female that has had triple by pass and has scared lung and is on oxygen.and Her blood count is not right and she has to have
    transfusens 5 days outthe month until .
    the medication shes on is not working anymore.

  • Cammie, since we are not a medical site, we are unable to offer medical advice. We suggest you ask your health care professional your questions. We certainly wish you well.

  • When taking an autoimmune suppressant for lupus treatment, is there a higher likihood of contagious disease (esp. when one works with children...school environment)?

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