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The Lowdown on Lupus

Seal's facial scars and hair loss are due to a childhood bout with lupus.
Courtesy of Warner Music

Halloween costumes and candy may be on your mind, but October is also the time to recognize Lupus Awareness Month. But what exactly is lupus? Find out all you need to know about this disease right here.

What Is Lupus?

Everyone has a fighter in them. It's called the immune system! It battles germs and bacteria to keep your body from getting sick. But if your immune system isn't working properly, it becomes autoimmune and starts attacking itself - that's when you get sick. Lupus (pronounced loo-pus) is an autoimmune disease, where the immune system attacks your body's healthy cells and tissues, causing inflammation and tissue damage. There are three types of lupus.

  • Systemic lupus erythematosus - SLE is the most common and the most serious. It can affect any part of the body, but usually the skin, joints, heart, lungs and brain.
  • Discoid lupus - This type causes a rash on the face, neck or scalp and can leave scars.
  • Drug-induced lupus - This type is caused by a bad reaction to medication. It affects your body in the same way that SLE does, but will go away once you stop taking the medicine.

What Causes It?

Scientists still don't know what causes lupus, but they think it could be factors like genetics and the environment. The good news is that it isn't contagious, which means you can't catch it from someone who has it.

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Achy or swollen joints.
  • Extreme tiredness.
  • Skin rashes.
  • Anemia.
  • Photosensitivity (sensitive to sunlight).
  • Hair loss.
  • Ulcers in the mouth or nose.

How Is It Treated?

Unfortunately, there's no cure for lupus yet, but it's treatable with immunosuppressive medication to stop the immune system from attacking itself and corticosteroids to control inflammation. It's also important to get a lot of rest, eat a well-balanced diet and wear plenty of sunscreen when you're out in the sun.

Did U Know?

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Comments

ps3master

ps3master wrote:

My great uncle has lupus,lung cancer,and tb.
commented: Thu Sep 12, 2013

rootbeer_lover147
welll ihavent
commented: Thu Dec 22, 2011

x-Toxic-Gummybearz-x
Maybe its caused by kissing. Most 15-44 year olds most likely already had their first kiss.
commented: Sun Oct 02, 2011

there are 3 more comments

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kitcat165
kitcat165 posted in Friends:
well this is kind of a long story but ill try to make it as short as possible. so it all started about 4 years ago. this new boy came to my school. he was super cute and all the girls had a crush on him. at first i did not like him in a crush way but after a while feelings started growing. we started talking and he seemed to like me to. after elementary was done we ended up going to the same middle school.fast forward to this year me and him are in the same class. while i was in 6th grade i found my best friend me and her been bffs since then. she is also in the same class. ever since the begging of this year they grew really close. they are always talking and it seems like she like him and vice versa. every time they are together i feel this overwhelming since of jealousy and anger. like is she better than me or??? the thing that really gets to me is that she knew i liked him. omg i need advice like what should i do :mad
reply about 1 hour
Macbarbie09
I have a huge problem. When my dad told me that there were Minion and Homer Simpson Slippers i was like bribing for them and my mom said NO. Doesn't she know that people have Feelings?I just want those slippers very badly. I can't stop thinking about them. I WANT those MINION OR HOMER SIMPSON SLIPPERS! My mom is no fun anymore!  :devil  :devil
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Macbarbie09
Macbarbie09 posted in Friends:
"1Dglittercat43" wrote:omg u have the same username as bethany mota on youtube!!!!anyways, do u think that u  like him? try to hang around for a bit and ask his friends if he likes you, try to stay close to him (not stalkerlike, u know wat i mean) and see if it seems like he likes you, ask your friends to help 2! that's cause i like Macbarbie07.  
reply about 3 hours
Hello121
Hello121 posted in Style:
How do I ask my mum that I want to get my eyebrows done? Everyone has :( 
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foreverfamily
foreverfamily posted in Friends:
Your you and your unique there's no need to change just because your friends don't accept you as you and if they don't stop when you ask them to they must not be your true friends you will find better friends then them out there because your you and your unique who wouldn't want to be friends with you I want to be your friend
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