May Is Lupus Awareness Month
Posted by Catherine Morgan on May 30, 2010
May is Lupus Awareness Month, and even though it’s the end of the month, I wanted to do my part to bring more attention to this devastating disease and some of the brave women living and blogging with it.
Lupus is an autoimmune disease that affects many more women than men. In fact, ninety percent of people who develop Lupus are women. The scary part about Lupus is that it can damage any organ in the body (including the heart, kidneys, lungs, blood, joints, and skin) causing life-threatening complications.
Here are a few Facts For Lupus Awareness Month…
- The most common symptoms of lupus are: extreme fatigue or exhaustion, headaches, painful or swollen joints, fever, a butterfly-shaped rash across cheeks and nose, sun- or light-sensitivity, and hair loss.
- Approximately two-thirds of people with lupus will develop some type of skin complication. This often is in the form of a rash or sores, most of which will appear on sun-exposed areas, such as face, ears, neck, arms, and legs.
- There is no single laboratory test that can determine whether a person does or does not have lupus. Diagnosing lupus involves analyzing the results of several lab tests that are used to monitor the immune system, along with a review of the person’s entire medical history.
- Systemic lupus is the most common type of lupus. Systemic lupus can affect any organ system of the body, including the heart, kidneys, lungs, blood, joints, and skin.
- In lupus, the immune system loses its ability to tell the difference between foreign substances, such as viruses or bacteria, and the body’s healthy tissue. The result is the production of auto-antibodies that attack healthy tissue.
- Since many symptoms of lupus mimic those of other illnesses, lupus often can take three to five years to diagnose. Symptoms of lupus can come and go over time, which makes a definite diagnosis more difficult.
There are many courageous women living and blogging with Lupus, and May is the perfect time to check out their blogs and show them some love and support. If you know a woman blogging with Lupus please share their link in comments.
From Melanie – College Life with Lupus…
I am currently a college student in MA living with lupus. I was diagnosed in September of 2008. After my diagnosis I started to read blogs and articles, but noticed there were not many specific to my age group. This led to my decision to start my own blog to address the issues that young people may have when living with lupus or other chronic conditions. Join me as I navigate college life with lupus!
From Jayna – Living La Vida Lupus…
I’m a 40ish female, happily married with 2 wonderful kids who are in college. I’ve been an R.N. since 1989. Worked as communicable disease supervisor for years. Was diagnosed with Lupus,Rheumatoid Arthritis and Sjogren’s disease approx 9 years ago. Finally these diseases have caused complications to the point that I had to give up my jobs/career last year. Am now on SS disability. Have spent the past year fighting the complications and knowing that God has a plan for me but wishing he gave me just a hint of what his plan might be for me? I’m now trying to live in the moment and try to make memories with my family.
From Life in the Autoimmune Lane – Have Lupus? The Lupus Alliance of America Needs Your Help…
[I]f you have lupus or are a parent of a child with lupus, will you please take the survey? It’s put out by The Lupus Alliance of America, it takes about 30 minutes and it’s results will help them learn what people with lupus are in need of, and the data will help spread awareness and speak of what effects lupus has on the people with the disease. Remember, awareness is key. It’s not going to be able to be swept under the rug anymore. It needs immediate attention, more funding for research to find a cure.
From Sarah at Despite Lupus: Lupus and Living Well – The Cumulative Effect…
Sara Gorman was diagnosed in January of 2001 with systemic lupus. She was 26 years old, had been married less than six weeks, and was at a high point in her career in television production. Determined not to let a chronic illness dictate her plans for the future, she refused to admit that her busy lifestyle and indomitable attitude were hindering her chances for a long, productive life. After four years of running her body into the ground, she realized she was fighting life, instead of living it. Thus, she made it her top priority to start living well, despite lupus.
From Sheila – My Lupus Fog Blog…
I was diagnosed with Lupus on June 8, 2009. My biggest obstacle with the disease is what it’s doing to my brain. So I’ve decided to write about what’s happening, good or bad.
From Shaista – Lupus in Flight…
I live a meditative life in a green village in England. I was diagnosed with Lupus when I was 18 and much of my poetry writes itself in response to living with such a peculiar, demanding and life-altering illness. I write about love and longing and hope. But most of all, I write about freedom.
From Chronic Chick Talk – Life With Lupus and Fibromyalgia…
I haven’t been around in a while because of my health. A few weeks back I learned that I have extra health problems. I’ve developed gallstones and a thickening in my abdominal wall and I don’t know what has caused anyone of this yet. It is pretty scary because lupus attacks just about every part of your body. I don’t like waiting for test results it’s a lot like waiting for a boiling pot to boil and nobody likes either one. The good news is they had me change my diet to a low fat diet which has been a bit of a change.
Additional Lupus Information: