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May is Lupus Awareness Month

  • Category: Education
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: Amanda Akey

Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease that affects many different parts of the body. An autoimmune disease occurs when the body’s immune system attacks itself because it cannot tell the difference between healthy tissue and foreign invaders, such as bacteria and viruses.

Lupus symptoms can show up in many different ways and are often mistaken for symptoms of other diseases. Lupus symptoms can range from mild to life-threatening, so early diagnosis, treatment and disease management is important.

Common symptoms can include:

  • Fatigue or extreme exhaustion no matter how much they sleep
  • Muscle and joint pain or swelling
  • Skin rashes (in particular a butterfly-shaped face rash across the cheeks and nose)
  • Fever
  • Hair loss
  • Recurring mouth sores

If you are experiencing some of these symptoms on a consistent basis, talk to your primary care physician. If necessary they can refer you to a rheumatologist, a specialist who treats diseases of the joints, muscles, and bones. Find a physician or a specialist near you at