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Lupus erythematosus
Classification and external resources
ICD-10 L93.
ICD-9 695.4

Lupus erythematosus is a connective tissue disease.[1] Lupus is a chronic inflammatory disease that occurs when the body's immune system attacks its own tissues and organs (autoimmunity). Inflammation caused by lupus can affect many different body systems, including joints, skin, kidneys, blood cells, heart, and lungs. Lupus occurs more frequently in women than in men,[2] although the reasons for this are unknown. Four types of lupus exist — systemic lupus erythematosus, discoid lupus erythematosus, drug-induced lupus erythematosus and neonatal lupus. Of these, systemic lupus erythematosus is the most common and serious form of lupus.


Lupus erythematosus may manifest as a systemic disease or in purely cutaneous forms, categorized into the following types:[3]

See also


  1. ^ Freedberg, et al. (2003). Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. (6th ed.). McGraw-Hill. ISBN 0071380760.
  2. ^ Massarotti EM (September 27, 2008). "Managing musculoskeletal issues in lupus: The patient’s input invited". The Journal of Musculoskeletal Medicine 25 (10). 
  3. ^ James, William; Berger, Timothy; Elston, Dirk (2005). Andrews' Diseases of the Skin: Clinical Dermatology. (10th ed.). Saunders. Chapter 8. ISBN 0721629210.

Simple English

Lupus erythematosus
Classification and other resource links
ICD-10 L93., M32.
ICD-9 710.0
OMIM 152700
DiseasesDB 12782
MedlinePlus 000435
eMedicine med/2228  emerg/564
MeSH D008180

Lupus erythematosus, also called Lupus, is a disease. It is chronic, which means it does not go away. The Immune system is made up of white blood cells in your body that fight off disease. Lupus makes these white blood cells think that the healthy cells of the body around them are diseased, so they end up attacking healthy parts of the body. Lupus can be deadly. Lupus causes swelling and tissue damage, and can attack any part of the body. It most commonly affects the heart, joints, skin, lungs, blood vessels and the brain/nervous system. There is treatment for Lupus, called immunosuppression, which is medicine that stops the white blood cells from damaging healthy cells for a while. After a while, this medicine wears off, and then the white blood cells go back to hurting healthy parts of the body again. There is no cure for Lupus that stops the white blood cells from ever again attacking healthy parts of the body, but doctors are not giving up on finding a cure.

Lupus takes its name from the Latin word "Lupus", meaning wolf. This is because some people thought that a Lupus-caused rash looks like a rash that wolves get. Other people think that wolves do not really get rashes, and if they did, the rash is covered by the wolf's thick fur, and can not be seen. In the United States alone, there may be 270,000 to 1.5 million (1,500,000) people with Lupus. Worldwide, it is estimated (not known for sure, but a good guess) that over 5 million (5,000,000) people have Lupus[needs proof]. The disease mainly affects young women, but men can still get it.


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