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Lupus

Lupus is a condition that affects the immune system. It can cause problems with your skin, joints, kidneys and other organs.

Symptoms of lupus include joint pain, extreme tiredness and a rash on your face.

There's currently no cure for lupus, but the symptoms can often be treated with medicines that reduce inflammation in your body, such as steroids.

Lupus is caused by your immune system mistakenly attacking healthy parts of your body. It's not fully understood why this happens.

Read more on the NHS website.

Symptoms of lupus include joint pain, extreme tiredness and a rash on your face.

See a GP if you often get:

These are the main symptoms of lupus.

As well as the 3 main symptoms, you might also have:

Important

Lupus is better managed if diagnosed and treated early.

Read more on the NHS website.

There's currently no cure for lupus, but the symptoms can often be treated with medicines that reduce inflammation in your body, such as steroids.

Medical treatments

Lupus is generally treated using:

  • anti-inflammatory medicines like ibuprofen
  • hydroxychloroquine for fatigue and skin and joint problems
  • steroid tablets, injections and creams for kidney inflammation and rashes

Two newer medicines (rituximab and belimumab) are sometimes used to treat severe lupus. These work on the immune system to reduce the number of antibodies in the blood.

Self-care

Although medicines are important in controlling lupus, you can help manage your symptoms and reduce the risk of it getting worse.


Do

  • eat a healthy, balanced diet
  • try to stay active when you're having a flare-up – try walking or swimming
  • get lots of rest
  • try relaxation techniques to manage stress – stress can make symptoms worse
  • use high-factor (50+) sunscreen – you can get it on prescription if you have lupus
  • wear a hat in the sun
  • tell your employer about your condition – you might be able to adjust your working pattern
  • ask for help from family, friends and health professionals

Don't

  • do not smoke – stopping smoking is the most important thing to do if you have lupus
  • do not sit in direct sunlight or spend a lot of time in rooms with fluorescent lights

Read more on the NHS website.

Lupus is caused by your immune system mistakenly attacking healthy parts of your body. It's not fully understood why this happens.

Read more on the NHS website.