Lupus is defined as a condition that primarily attacks the immune system, causing suppression of the body’s main defenses. The disease affects women in general although a small percentage of patients with lupus are men. With time, SLE or systematic lupus erythematosus causes the body’s immune defenses to attack the cells, tissues, and eventually the body systems; causing a patient to succumb not just to complications of an impaired immune system but vital organ failure as well. Where there is infection, there’s bound to be inflammation and since the body’s immune defenses is down with lupus, inflammation of various parts and organs can be observed such as that of blood cells, joints, the heart, kidneys, and lungs.
One of the cardinal signs of lupus is having reddish, inflamed patchy skin and the butterfly rash on the face. Basically, the immune system produces antibodies or cells that aid in the body’s defenses. The antibodies shield the body against bouts of infection and harmful microorganisms. But for people with lupus, the immune defenses are depressed and the body is not able to distinguish health from disease because of the condition. What makes lupus worse is that the body is starting to attack the healthy cells and tissues, rendering the body ill for a long time. The latest breakthrough in medicine has not yet determined the cause for the disease and how to cure it.
Scientists are still on the verge of hopefully finding a cure for the condition and help save lives. In general, lupus is a genetic disorder, passed down from a parent to a child or from an ancestor to a descendant. The most at-risk age groups for having lupus are those between fifteen to 44 years of age. Most of the time, the disease is not determined until later when it has progressed into a worse and more morbid state.