Lupus Symptoms – Butterfly Rash and Treatments
Lupus is a long-term chronic autoimmune disorder where the immune system is set in overdrive and begins to literally attack the body. It presents with a variety of different symptoms that can affect the joints, skin, brain, kidneys and other vital organs.
Lupus Symptoms vary between individual to individual. One of the most common symptoms is a skin rash that affects the face most commonly but can also appear on the scalp or other parts of the body.
Lupus Disease is also known as SLE, or systemic lupus erythematosus. The symptoms of this disease come and go due to the nature of the disease and most sufferers use treatments to alleviate these symptoms since there is no known cure.
The cause of lupus is yet unknown in the medical community but it is believed that it is related to genetics, the environment of the sufferer or a combination of the two. A couple of triggers in people susceptible to lupus can include certain medications and sunlight.
Since the cause, risk factors and cure are things that so far are virtually unknown, the best course of action is to reduce the inflammation and other symptoms caused by lupus. Lupus Rash is treated with various medications, topical creams and/or lifestyle changes respectively.
Skin rashes and inflammation is unavoidable in most chronic cutaneous lupus cases. These rashes can appear as round, disk shaped sores that present on the face and scalp in common cases.
Discoid lupus rashes are mostly thick, scaly and red but they usually do not hurt or itch.
This rash can leave scarring or discoloration of the skin behind. The lesions on the scalp can cause hair loss which can be permanent.
It helps to avoid the triggers of this subacute cutaneous lupus rash by staying out of the sun or cover your body when you are and try to avoid or prepare for fluorescent lights.
Malar Rash, another term for butterfly rash, occurs when the lupus is active. These lesions appear as flat, red skin patches that might look like sunburn or wind burn.
While the face is the most common place this rash appears it can also show up on the legs, arms and other parts of the body.
Some treatments for these skin rashes include avoiding triggers, topical treatments, oral medications and some experimental treatments still being used in certain research and case studies. Some lupus sufferers also use natural supplements, creams, vitamins and foods that can decrease the symptoms of the rashes.
Preventative measures like avoiding triggers include avoiding or protecting your skin from the sun and any kind of artificial ultraviolet lighting. Sunscreens, long sleeves, hats, sunscreen and shady areas are recommended.
A few topical treatments can include calcineurin inhibitors and corticosteroid sprays, creams, lotions, foams, gels or other ointments and solutions.
Since lupus can range from mild to severe and the symptoms vary, treatments like sulfones, antimalarial drugs and short-term corticosteroids are used for mild to moderate Lupus Symptoms. Patients suffering with severe skin rashes from lupus can be treated with long-term corticosteriods, methotrexate, gold, thalidomide or other medications.
The severity and individual person determines the course of treatment.