Lupus autoimmune disease which is also known as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) or just lupus is a chronic and acute inflammation of different body tissues. Since lupus is an autoimmune disease, it is one of those illnesses that suggest that the body tissues are affected by its own immune system. Persons afflicted with lupus have the tendency of developing abnormal antibodies in their blood. The antibodies or autoantibodies target the body tissues rather than fight the invading infectious agents.
What Is Lupus?
Lupus has the capability to affect different areas of the body since the antibodies and related inflammation cells can affect any body tissue. Diseases of the kidneys, heart, lungs, skin, joints and nervous system are caused by lupus autoimmune disease. Lupus autoimmune disease is referred to as lupus dermatitis when only the skin is affected. Lupus is known as SLE when internal organs are affected.
The collection of lupus autoimmune diseases is called lupus erythematosus which is a disease by which the immune system of the person becomes hyperactive. The hyperactive condition of the immune system makes it invade healthy and normal tissues and is manifested by symptoms which affects various body systems such as the heart, lungs, blood cells, joints, the skin and kidneys as well.
The other types of lupus are drug-induced lupus and neonatal lupus but SLE is the most common and considered the most serious kind of lupus. There is still no current cure for SLE, making SLE fatal. But due to recent medical advances, fatalities involving those with SLE are steadily reducing especially in countries like the United States,Canada and Europe.
The symptoms of lupus autoimmune disease are many but the most common are skin rash and joint illnesses such as arthritis.
Photosensitivity is also a known symptom of lupus.
Symptoms of SLE vary widely and are considered come and go symptoms. Diagnosis can be elusive while unexplained symptoms have been recorded for those infected with SLE and have been untreated for years.
Women at High Risk for Lupus
Women are mostly affected by autoimmune diseases and this happens often during the child-bearing years of the female or those within the 15 to 35 age bracket.
Lupus occurs about 8 to 9 times more often in women than in men. Common to women are discoid lupus and systemic lupus.The chances of acquiring the disease by the descendants of the person with lupus are high since the disease is often passed genetically. African-Americans and people of Chinese and Japanese descent are mostly affected by lupus.