Systemic Lupus Erythematosus or SLE is an autoimmune disease that causes the body’s immune system to attack healthy cell tissue. This can can affect the skin, joints, brain, kidney and organs. At this point the causes of SLEW are not fully known. SLE is found more common in women. The disease can occur at any age, but is more common in people between the ages of 10-50. Asians and African Americans are affected by SLE more often then other ethnicity.
Children that experience systemic lupus erythematosus are generally between the age of 3-15 with girls outnumbering boy patients by 4:1 and have skin manifestations of butterfly rashes.
In Symptoms can vary depending on the person. In most cases of SLE there is joint pain that may cause swelling. Some people may develop arthritis. The can be joint pain that affects the hands, wrist, or knees.
Some of the common systems are:
- Skin rashes, also called butterfly rash effect half the individuals SLE. The rash are often over the cheeks and bride over the noise.
- Chest pain, with deep breaths.
- General uneasiness and ill feelings
- Mouth Sores
- Swollen Lymph nodes
- Hair Loss
There are multiple types of lupus. The most common is SLE, which can affect multiple parts of the body, including the heart, joints, lungs, kidneys, liver and skin. This disease can be hard to determine the outcome when flair-ups happen.
There are symptoms that will affect the body in certain ways depending part of the body. For example: The brain and nervous system will be affected, Numbness, tingling, vision problems, and personality changes. The kidney will cause swelling and legs, weight gain.
Digestive tract: abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting. Lung and coughing up blood and difficulty breathing. Skin patchiness and fingers that change color when cold.
Exams and and Test
When people are are diagnosed with at least 4 out of 11 common sign of the disease. You will likely do a physical exam. The doctor will look for heart friction rub or may be heard. The doctor will also examine the nervous system.
There are test that can be used for diagnosing SLE such Antibody test, including antinuclear antibody panel, which is a blood test in which Antinuclear antibodies are substances that are produced by the immune system, that attack the body’s own tissues.
A CBC or complete blood count test will measure, the number of red blood count, or RBC count, and the white blood count or WBC. The CBC test will also count the amount of hemoglobin in the blood. The test will also measure the fraction of the blood composes of red blood cells or hematocrit.
Chest X-rays can also be taken by the doctor, which will analyze the chest, lungs, large arteries, heart, ribs a diaphragm. In the process the patient will stand in front of the X-ray machine, and is asked to hold he/her breath while the x-ray is taken.
There are not any cures for SLE, at this time. There are many forms of treatment, that primarily focuses on controlling the symptom. S0me types of symptoms, that involve the lungs, kidneys, heart and organs, will often need to be treated by specialist.
There are mild forms of disease that can be treated with several different type of treatment. Such as: NSAIDS or Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for joint symptoms and pleurisy may be given by your doctor. Corticosteriod creams may help with rashes. There are also drugs such as hydroxychloroquine and low corticosteroids for skin and arthritis symptoms.
For More severe forms of SLE, there high-dose corticosteroids, and Cytotoxic drugs, that block cell growth and suppress the immune system. These type of medicines are given if corticosteroids are not effective and symptoms get worst. However, these drugs may have side effects that can be severe, so the you need to monitored if these are taken.
The doctor will recommend, to wear protective clothing, sunscreen and sunglasses when in the sun. SLE will need to have preventive heart care. You should stay current on your immunizations. take test to screen for osteoporosis, (thinning bones)
Outcomes and Prognosis
In the most recent years, the outcome for people with SLE has improved, many people with SLE will have mild symptoms. The disease will be more active if it’s the first year after diagnosis and people over 40. Many women, who have SLE and are pregnant will deliver healthy babies and outcomes are goof for women who receive proper treatment and do not have kidney or heart problems. However are also increase risk of miscarriage when some SLE antibodies are used.
People with SLE may have abnormal high deposits in the kidney cells. The leas to a condition called lupus nephritis. Lupus nephritis is a kidney disorder in which SLE may damage different parts of the kidney leading to leading to interstitial nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and membranous GN. It may rapidly worsen to kidney failure. Patients may develop kidney failure and may need dialysis or a kidney transplant.
- Severely low blood platelet counts, which prevents the body form bleeding out.
- Blood clots can occur in the legs or lungs
- Destruction of blood cells may cause anemia of chronic disease.
- Fluid in and around the lungs, and tissue damage in and around the lung tissue.
- Fluid in the and around the heart endocarditis, or inflammation of heart (mycarditis)
- Pregancy complications.