Lupus is a complex autoimmune disease that can affect ANY part of the body. It occurs when the immune system attacks healthy tissues and organs, causing inflammation and damage. The symptoms of lupus can vary widely.
One of the most common symptoms of lupus is a rash on the skin. This rash typically appears on the face, neck, and scalp, and is known as the butterfly rash due to its butterfly-like shape. Other skin symptoms of lupus include photosensitivity, which causes a rash or sunburn-like reaction when exposed to sunlight, and discoid lupus, which causes scaly patches on the skin and can cause permanent scarring.
Lupus can cause inflammation and pain in the joints, similar to arthritis. The joints may also become swollen and stiff, and it can be difficult to move them. This is known as lupus arthritis, and it typically affects the fingers, wrists, and knees. Unfortunately, it can affect nearly every joint as well.
Lupus can also affect the kidneys, leading to lupus nephritis. This occurs when the immune system attacks the kidneys, causing inflammation and damage. Lupus nephritis can cause high blood pressure, swelling in the legs and feet, and changes in urine output. If you notice pink, foamy or frothy urine - reach out to your doctor right away.
Lupus can cause inflammation in the lungs, leading to conditions such as pleurisy and pneumonitis. These conditions can cause chest pain, shortness of breath, and a cough. Personally, pleuritis felt like a stabbing pain in my chest and prevented me from being able to stand up straight.
Lupus can also affect the heart, leading to inflammation of the heart lining or valves. This can cause chest pain, shortness of breath, and an irregular heartbeat. In rare cases, lupus can also cause inflammation of the heart muscle, known as myocarditis.
Brain and nervous system
Lupus can affect the brain and nervous system, leading to conditions such as seizures, psychosis, and peripheral neuropathy. Lupus can also cause headaches, dizziness, and memory problems. Lupus can also be a cause of anxiety, depression and mood changes.
In conclusion, lupus can affect any part of the body, leading to a wide range of symptoms and complications. It is important for you to work closely with your healthcare providers to manage your symptoms and prevent long-term complications. You can live WELL, you can live a FULL life, and you can be happy with Lupus!
If you're ready to get started on reducing your symptoms with diet and lifestyle changes, make sure to reach out to me and schedule your free 15-minute meet and greet call. Don't waste time, when you can start feeling better today!