Lupus (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus) Health (cont.)

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Prevention of Lupus Flares

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SLE is undoubtedly a potentially serious illness with involvement of numerous organ systems. However, it is important to recognize that most people with SLE lead full, active, and healthy lives. Periodic increases in disease activity (flares) can usually be managed by varying medications. However, since ultraviolet light can precipitate and worsen flares, people with systemic lupus should avoid sun exposure in order to prevent lupus flares. Sunscreens and clothing covering the extremities can be helpful. Abruptly stopping medications, especially corticosteroids, can also cause flares of lupus and should be avoided. People with SLE are at increased risk of infections, especially if they are taking corticosteroids or immunosuppressive medications. Therefore, any unexpected fever should be reported and evaluated.

The key to successful management of SLE is regular contact and communication with the doctor, allowing monitoring of symptoms, disease activities, and treatment of side effects.

Lupus Pictures

Media file 1: Malar rash of lupus
Click to view original picture of the malar rash of lupus

Media type: Photo

Media file 2: Typical skin rash of lupus on the face. Although certain rashes are more characteristic of lupus, the skin manifestations are many.
Click to view original picture of a typical lupus rash on the face

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Media file 3: Deep venous thrombosis (blood clot). Notice the contrast between the involved left leg and the normal right leg. Redness, swelling, and warmth combined with discomfort in the involved leg are cardinal manifestations of a deep venous thrombosis.
Click to view original picture of a deep vein thrombosis

Media type: Photo


Patient Comments

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Lupus - Symptoms Question: The symptoms of lupus can vary greatly from patient to patient. What were your symptoms at the onset of your disease?
Lupus - Treatments Question: What treatments have been effective for your lupus?
Lupus - Experience Question: Please describe your experience with lupus.
Lupus (Systemic Lupus) - Prevention Question: What prevention measures do you use to avoid getting lupus flares?

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