lupus symptoms

Lupus and period problems, explained

Are you living with lupus (SLE) and experiencing problems with your monthly period? (Like, not getting it. Or having a really heavy, long period.) And have you ever wondered how lupus might play a role in this? Read on. What does the research show? Small studies have found that people with SLE are at greater risk of menstrual irregularities compared to the general/healthy population. The greatest type of irregularity appears to be sustained amenorrhoea (long-term absence of a period). Some people with SLE experience premature menopause. These factors may increase the risk of period irregularities: Being age 30+ Being on cyclophosphamide therapy (a chemotherapy drug) Taking immunosupressants (see a list of immunosupressive medications used to treat lupus) Young people (17 and under) with juvenile SLE also experience period irregularity and hormone abnormalities, research has shown. If you’re not getting your period (at any age), tell your doctor and ask how your lupus, treatments and other factors (such as menopause or any other health conditions you may have, like polycystic ovary syndrome) could be affecting “Aunt Flo.” If you are getting a heavy or prolonged period, it’s also important to talk with your doctor and get checked for anemia, which is already a common problem in people with lupus. Some women find …

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What’s the lupus/kidney connection? Our healthcare pros explain lupus nephritis and more

“Kidney” is one of the top terms that PatientsLikeMe members are searching for in the lupus forum (click here to join the site for forum access). Last year’s news of Selena Gomez’s kidney transplant put a spotlight on the lupus/kidney link. Lupus can affect your kidneys in a few different ways, so we asked our Health Data Integrity Team (our in-house clinical healthcare professionals) to help us learn more. What is lupus nephritis? Lupus nephritis is an inflammation of the kidneys caused by an autoimmune response. Lupus can cause an autoimmune attack on various parts or tissues in your body, including the kidneys. During this attack, the immune system turns on itself and tries to fight off “foreign invaders” — which are actually your body’s own healthy cells. This can trigger inflammation and swelling of the tissue in an attempt to eliminate foreign bodies. Lupus nephritis can impair the kidneys so they’re not able to properly remove waste or control fluids in your body. Left untreated, nephritis can lead to more serious kidney disease. Cases may range from mild to severe, depending on the signs and symptoms and what areas of the kidney are involved. Here are some symptoms of lupus nephritis: Unexplained swelling in your feet, …

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Lupus Hair Loss and Folic Acid Hair Loss: Tips and Treatments

Are you losing some of your locks because of lupus? Hair loss isn’t usually listed among the core symptoms of lupus, but it does affect many people living with SLE (systemic lupus erythematosus) and discoid lupus. It may be caused by lupus itself, certain treatments for lupus, or other illnesses or health issues (such as thyroid problems or nutritional deficiencies), according to the National Resource Center on Lupus. How do PatientsLikeMe members manage it and try to protect their mane? How members manage hair loss A number of PatientsLikeMe members with lupus have mentioned hair loss in the forum, and some say that hair loss was among their first cluster of symptoms pointing to lupus or a health condition. (Join PatientsLikeMe or log in to see members reporting hair loss, its severity and treatments they’ve tried.) The same tips and products won’t work for everyone (and remember to check with your doctor before trying new supplements or treatments) — but here are a few pointers and perspectives from members who’ve had hair loss. “My hair has been falling out for 2 1/2 years. What’s helped me with it is coconut oil, hair vitamins (vitamin B, folic acid, biotin). This doesn’t stop it from falling out but it speeded up healthy hair …

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