"Estoy Bien" Video Series: Symptoms & Diagnosis

"Lupus is a chronic inflammatory disease that occurs when your body's immune system attacks your own tissues and organs. Inflammation caused by lupus can affect many different body systems — including your joints, skin, kidneys, blood cells, brain, heart and lungs." - Mayo Clinic

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW

 

Since lupus is a disease that can cause harm to any part of the body, this means that the symptoms of every patient may vary.  The most common symptoms are the following: 

  • Extreme fatigue (tiredness)
  • Headaches
  • Painful or swollen joints
  • Fever
  • Anemia (low numbers of red blood cells or hemoglobin, or low total blood volume)
  • Swelling (edema) in feet, legs, hands, and/or around eyes
  • Pain in chest on deep breathing (pleurisy)
  • Butterfly-shaped rash across cheeks and nose
  • Sun- or light-sensitivity (photosensitivity)
  • Hair loss
  • Abnormal blood clotting
  • Fingers turning white and/or blue when cold (Raynaud’s phenomenon)
  • Mouth or nose ulcers

Every lupus patient's symptoms and road to diagnosis is completely different. According to The Lupus Foundation of America, on average it takes six years for a patient to be diagnosed. This is mainly because at times, some symptoms may be more prevalent than others. Over time, as more lupus symptoms begin to appear, physicians are capable of providing a more clear diagnosis. 
 

Sources: mayoclinic.org

Maritza Cardenaslupus