The Lupus clinic offers a multi-disciplinary treatment for the complex autoimmune disease, LUPUS (Systemic Lupus Erythematous) which mostly affects women from the age of 15 to 45 years. This disease causes joint pain, fever, skin rashes as well as cause damages to the organs. Since, Lupus is not curable, a person has to lifelong manage the disease.
If you are a diagnosed patient of Lupus, the following are the signs when you should contact your doctor immediately.
- Unexplained fever
- Cough with expectoration
- Burning urination
- Intense unexplained headache
- If there is any new symptom which bothers you, kindly contact your family physician. They may be or may not be related to lupus and your family physician can guide you.
We recommend that if you have Lupus, you should be seen about every three months, even if you're feeling well.
Till date there is no cure for lupus but like in the cases of hypertension and diabetes it can be very well controlled. The treatment plan for lupus depends on its severity and organ system involvement. Mild disease may need small doses of steroids and medications like hydroxychloroquine. More severe disease requires higher doses of steroid and additional drugs called immunosuppressive agents. Specific organ system involvement will also need the inputs from specialists in that field of Cardiologists for cardiac problems and neurologists for nervous system diseases.
The basic tests done are, complete blood counts, ESR, creatinine, urine routine and chest x-ray. Antinuclear antibody test (ANA), complement tests are some of the specialized tests done to diagnose and assess this disease. Further testing would also depend on the organ system involved. For e.g. an MRI brain may be needed for assessing neuron-lupus and 2D echo for cardiac disease.
Dr. C Balakrishnan