June 9, 2012
Professor: Daudi Langat
Lupus: Is It Hereditary?
In the past, immune diseases have affected many people. Some immune diseases are classified as chronic inflammatory diseases which affect various parts in the body. Lupus, a mild disease, affects only a few organs. It’s also known as a “women’s disease” even though some men are also affected by this sickness. Modern medicine is providing information on Lupus through scientific research that is being conducted to find ways to prevent and cure Lupus. People with different types of Lupus are often searching for different treatments and hoping for a cure to be found. History of Lupus
In the early 20th century, most physicians thought Lupus was a skin disease. Lupus got its name because patients looked like they had been bitten or scratched by wolves. In Latin the word Lupus means “wolf”. Over the centuries Lupus has had many names like “the great imitator” because this disease mimics other diseases or “women’s disease” because Lupus affects mostly women. Lupus does occur 10 to 15 times more in adult females than among adult males (Cause). With all the ongoing research to find a cause for Lupus, researchers can’t find a reason why Lupus occurs. Some researchers believe there is not one specific cause but, there are probably multiple factors. Several different single genes increase the risk for Lupus by increasing the body’s ability to make antibodies. The most common ages for the onset of Lupus are between 18 and 55, even though this disease can occur before or after these ages. Most people believe that this disease only occurs in women but men also get this sickness. A ration of men to women who get this sickness is about 1 to 13 (Lupus).
A Description of Lupus
Lupus is a chronic inflammatory disease that can affect various parts of the body, especially the skin, joints, blood and kidneys. More the 16,000 Americans develop Lupus each year. It is estimated that 500,000 to 1, 5 million people have been diagnosed with Lupus (Definition). Statistics show that 38 percent of people are familiar with Lupus, 39 percent have heard of the disease, and 22 percent have never heard of Lupus (Americans Know). Although Lupus is known to occur within families, there is no known gene or genes which are thought to cause this illness. Statistics show that 10 percent of patient will have a close relative who has Lupus, so there is no question that Lupus can be inherited (Cause). Some people want to know if they can get Lupus from others who have this disease, and the answer to that is not a contagious disease. Types of Lupus
The following are the three different forms of Lupus:
* Systemic Lupus
* Discoid Lupus
* Drug-induced Lupus
Discoid Lupus only affects the skin. This disease can worsen with sun exposure, or some substance such as perfume or shampoo. Approximately 15 percent of people with Lupus have Discoid Lupus (Lupus). This is a disease of the skin that’s often chronic and can sometimes lead to scarring Systemic Lupus affects several different parts of the body. Of the people with Systemic Lupus, about half have the form that can damage the body’s internal organs; the other half has the non-organ threatening form (Lahita, Robert G., M.D.). Seventy percent of people who get Lupus have Systemic Lupus (Symptoms of Lupus). Drug-induced Lupus occurs because of a reaction to one or more drugs. About 10 percent of people with Lupus have Drug-induced Lupus Symptoms of the Disease. In Lupus there is not just one symptom, but there are eleven basic symptoms. These symptoms vary from patient to patient. A redness or rash on the face may appear in a butterfly configuration on the molar ridge or cheeks. Discoid rash can involve blotches or raised scaly lesions. These thick raised patches can occur on any part of the body. Lupus patients may experience a harmful physiological reaction to sunlight that is more severe than just sunburn. Ulcers or...