5 Symptoms of Lupus

bigstock-132919457Over 1.5 million people are living with lupus. Lupus is an autoimmune disorder where one’s immune system attacks their body’s organs, joints and tissues. Anyone can get lupus, however lupus is more common in women of non-Caucasian descent. Since lupus is all too common it’s important that women be able to spot the signs and symptoms.

1. Fatigue
A common symptom of lupus is extreme fatigue. A lot of women with lupus wake up feeling tired, they never feel like they got a good night’s sleep. However, fatigue is a common symptom in many disorders and diseases, so just because you’re feeling burned out doesn’t mean you have lupus.

2. Joint pain and swelling
Swelling in the knuckles and joints is especially common in the morning. Joint pain and swelling can be easily confused with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), another autoimmune disease. However, there are two key differences between lupus and RA. Lupus usually occurs at a younger age and the joint pain and swelling in lupus can be unilateral, or only on one side. Those with lupus may notice swelling in their right hand but not their left. With RA the swelling is usually on both sides of the body.

3. Fevers and rash
An unexplained fever accompanied by a butterfly shaped rash on one’s face may indicate lupus.

4. Chest pain
Men and women with lupus often suffer from something called pleurisy. Pleurisy is inflammation of the pleural lining of the lung and the chest cavity. This can result in tightness in the chest and painful breathing. This pain is typically worse when taking a deep breath.

5. Bloody urine and kidney stones
Lupus can attack any of the organs in one’s body. In advanced stages of the disease the body’s immune system attacks the kidneys. Weakened function of the kidney results in blood in the urine due to lack of filtration. Those with lupus also have a high risk of developing kidney stones.

If you have lupus, there are several things you can do to be sure you stay well:

  • Get plenty of rest
  • Start an exercise program
  • Eat a well-balanced diet
  • Keep up with your doctors

If you think you may be suffering from lupus, set up an appointment to see your doctor.

Have you or someone you love been diagnosed with lupus? How have you best managed your disease?

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Helpful Healthcare Links for August 24, 2016

Young woman with stomach issuesThere is a lot going on in healthcare news this week! I have put together a handful of trending health topics to share with you in hopes that this information will assist you in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Here are a few health articles for this week.

Unexplained fatigue? Joint pain and swelling? Seizures? These symptoms, combined with several others, could be lupus. Lupus is an autoimmune disease most commonly found in women. Knowing the signs and symptoms of lupus could be a matter of life or death for you or a loved one.

Bloating always seems to happen at the worst time, like a fun day at the beach or even on your wedding day. Turns out, this unwelcome digestive discomfort could be due to FODMAPs — Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols — which are basically sugar molecules that don’t digest properly and cause bloating.

Some teens are over medicated. Whether it be for ADHD, depression or acne, many kids are on at least one prescription drug. Suicide is the leading cause of death in teens, and studies have found a link between prescription drug use and teenage suicide.

Your eye color, your height and your skin tone are influenced by genes. But did you know that looking to your parents’ health can determine your life expectancy and your heart health?

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