Lupus is an ongoing or chronic disease that can have widespread effects on the body including joints, muscles and other organs.  It can be mild or very serious, even to cause fatal complications in vital organs.  

Lupus is an autoimmune disease, the body’s immune system mistakes healthy tissues and organs as foreign and attacks them.

Lupus often occurs in young adulthood through middle ages and affects ten times more women than men.  Higher risk falls in Hispanic or Black descent and those with family history.

There are 11 American College of Rheumatology criteria for Lupus.

Scaly disk-shaped rash on face, neck, ears, scalp, chest.

Butterfly-shaped rash across nose and cheeks.

Sunlight sensitivity.

Arthritis pain in joints.

Mouth, tongue or nose sores.

Kidney problems.

Pain in chest and side when breathing.

Neurological issues.

Immune system malfunction.

Blood problems.

Antinuclear antibodies.

It’s recommended that if you have 4 or more of these criteria to consult a rheumatologist.

Lupus falls into 3 main categories; Systematic Lupus Erythematosus, Discord Lupus Erythematosus and Drug-Induced Lupus.

Systematic Lupus (SLE) is a systematic autoimmune disease that can affect any part of the body, according to ‘Wikipedia.’  As occurs in other auto immune diseases, the immune system attacks the body’s cells and tissue, resulting in inflammation and tissue damage.  

SLE usually affects the heart, joints, blood vessels, lungs, kidneys, liver and nervous system.

The ‘flares’ alternate with remissions.  It is treatable through addressing it’s symptoms, mainly cyclophosphamide, corticosteroids and immunosuppressants.  There is no cure and it can be fatal, although not usually.

Discord Lupus (DIL) is a chronic inflammatory condition limited to the skin, caused by an autoimmune disease, according to ‘’

Treatments for it include avoiding sun exposure, antimalarial medications, local cortisone injections, immune suppression medications and dapsone.

DIL is caused by chronic use of certain drugs.  There are 38 known medications to cause DIL and there are 3 that report the highest.  They are hydralazine, procainamid and isoniazid.  

Symptoms of DIL typically present as myalgia and arthralgia.  The predisposing factor to developing DIL is the rate at which the body metabolizes the drug.  

Signs and symptoms of DIL are joint and muscle pain, fatigue, inflammation of the heart and lungs and anti-histone antibodies.  DIL occurs with long-term use.

Treatment is stop using the drug and symptoms will generally disappear days to weeks after being discontinued.  

All three ‘types’ of lupus can be minor or very serious, enough to be a nuisance or even fatal.  Each case is unique in how a person’s body reacts and what type of treatment is offered.   

It is important if to see a doctor immediately if you suffer from any of the symptoms suggested above.  Early treatment is important when dealing with any disease and the diagnosis can give you a piece of mind.