Lupus is an incurable autoimmune disease that can affect any part of the body, including the skin, joints, heart, lungs, blood, kidneys and brain. Normally the body’s immune system makes antibodies to protect the body against viruses, bacteria, and other foreign materials known as antigens. In lupus, the immune system cannot tell the difference between foreign substances and its own cells and tissues and makes antibodies directed against itself. These antibodies called “auto-antibodies” cause inflammation, pain and damage.
If lupus is detected early, treatment can minimize symptoms, reduce inflammation, and preserve normal body functions. Lupus primarily affects women, though men and children do get it. While there is no known cause for lupus, it is known that sunlight can trigger a flare up of the disease. Therefore, people living with lupus are advised to wear sun screen and protective clothing during sun exposure. Members of Lupus Ontario with lupus, along with friends and families, work together to raise funds for research into a cure, fund rheumatology fellowships, and create awareness of lupus.
To learn more click on Education and Resources button on Lupus Ontario site.
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