Home / Learn about Lupus / What is Lupus

Lupus – Systemic Lupus Erythematosus or SLE – is now an important and common illness of modern times. Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that is the result of an unbalanced immune system, which can become destructive to any major organ or tissue of the body.

This results in symptoms such as inflammation, swelling, and possible damage to joints, skin, kidneys, blood, the heart, or lungs.

What you should know about Lupus

  • Lupus is also a disease of flares (the symptoms worsen and you feel ill) and remissions (the symptoms improve and you feel better). Lupus can range from mild to life-threatening and should always be treated by a doctor. With good medical care, most people with lupus can lead a full life.
  • Lupus is not contagious, not even through sexual contact. You cannot “catch” lupus from someone or “give” lupus to someone.
  • Lupus is not like or related to cancer. Cancer is a condition of malignant, abnormal tissues that grow rapidly and spread into surrounding tissues. Lupus is an autoimmune disease, as described above.
  • Lupus is not like or related to HIV (Human Immune Deficiency Virus) or AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). In HIV or AIDS the immune system is underactive; in lupus, the immune system is overactive.
  • At least five million people worldwide have lupus. It attacks mainly women but men and even young children can be affected. It is estimated that 3000 people suffer from Lupus in Mauritius and many are yet to be diagnosed.
  • 90% of those affected will be women who develop lupus between the ages of 10 and 35 years. However, men, children, and teenagers develop lupus, too.
  • Women of color are 2-3 times more likely to develop lupus. People of all races and ethnic groups can develop lupus.
  • Lupus is a worldwide disease that is acknowledged as being mire common that leukemia, muscular dystrophy and multiple sclerosis.

div style = “line-height:25px;text-align:justify”