Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease that can damage any part of the body (skin, joints, and/or organs inside the body). Chronic means that the signs and symptoms tend to last longer than six weeks and often for many years. When people talk about “lupus,” they usually mean systemic lupus erythematosus, or SLE. This is the most common type of lupus. Studies suggest that more than 16,000 new cases are reported annually across the US, alone.
What causes lupus?
The cause of lupus is not known but something goes wrong with your immune system, which is the part of the body that fights off viruses, bacteria, and other germs (“foreign invaders,” like the flu). Normally our immune system produces proteins called antibodies that protect the body from these invaders. Autoimmune means your immune system cannot tell the difference between these foreign invaders and your body’s healthy tissues (“auto” means “self”). In lupus, your immune system creates auto antibodies which attack and destroy healthy tissue. These auto antibodies cause inflammation, pain, and damage in various parts of the body.
Who is at risk?
Women: 9 out of 10 people who have lupus are women. Lupus is most common in women of childbearing years.
Race: African American women are three times more likely to get lupus than white women. Lupus is also more common in Hispanic/Latina, Asian, and Native American women.
What parts of body are affected?
Although lupus can affect almost any organ system, the disease, for most people, affects only a few parts of the body. For example, one person with lupus may have swollen knees and fever. Another person may be tired all the time or have kidney trouble. Someone else may have rashes.
What are the symptoms?
Normally, lupus develops slowly, with symptoms that come and go. Women who get lupus most often develop symptoms and are diagnosed between the ages of 15 and 45. But the disease also can develop in childhood or later in life. Common signs of lupus are:
- Joint pain and stiffness, with or without swelling
- Muscle aches and pains
- Fever with no known cause
- Feeling very tired
- Skin rashes
- Anemia (too few red blood cells)
- Trouble thinking, memory problems, confusion
- Kidney problems with no known cause
- Chest pain when taking a deep breath
- Butterfly-shaped rash across the nose and cheeks
- Sun or light sensitivity hair loss
What are the complications?
Having lupus increases your risk of developing other health problems that are common in women. It can also cause these diseases to occur earlier in life such as:
Heart disease: Women with lupus are 50 times more likely to have chest pain or a heart attack than other women of the same age. This main type of heart disease is called coronary artery disease (CAD). This is partly because people with lupus have more CAD risk factors, which may include: high blood pressure (hypertension), high cholesterol levels, type 2 diabetes, and an inactive lifestyle due to fatigue, joint problems, and/or muscle pain.
Osteoporosis: Women with lupus have more bone loss and breaks than other women. This is thought to happen because some medicines used to treat lupus cause bone loss. Bone loss also may occur as a direct result of the disease. Also, pain and fatigue can keep women with lupus from exercising.
How is lupus treated?
Unfortunately, there is no known “medical or drug “cure for lupus. However, there are treatments and herbal therapy in the form of “Provailen” dietary supplement is one of such effective and safe options to treat and manage lupus successfully:
The goal of Provailen treatment is to:
- Prevent flares
- Treat symptoms when they occur
- Reduce organ damage and other problems
In addition, Provailen also works to reduce swelling and pain, prevent or reduce flares, calm the immune system, reduce or prevent damage to the joints and reduce or prevent organ damage in lupus.