Persistent health problems that are very difficult to eliminate can be caused by systemic lupus erythematosus. The symptoms of this disease are very diverse, so many do not realize that they are developing this particular ailment. What you need to know about its manifestations to avoid danger?
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a disease in which the functioning of the body's defense system is impaired, which leads to inflammatory processes in various organs and tissues. In recent years, doctors have noted an increase in the number of patients suffering from this disease. Due to the large-scale damage of the body, the risk of the development of functional insufficiency of one or several organs increases, which leads to a fatal outcome. But with mild and moderate course and timely medical care, the life expectancy of a patient with lupus erythematosus can be increased by an average of 10-15 years.
Where does danger come from?
The exact cause of systemic lupus erythematosus, accompanied by severe symptoms and consequences, medical science has not yet been established. There are only some assumptions related to medical observations:
- genetic predisposition;
- infection with a virus or harmful bacterium;
- hormonal changes;
- ultraviolet irradiation.
We tear the mask off the insidious disease
Symptoms of systemic lupus erythematosus occur depending on the form and stage of development of the pathology.
In the acute course of SLE appear:
- general weakness and severe fatigue;
- joint pain.
In the case of high activity of the development of the disease in 1-2 months, the lesions of the vital organs begin:
- the kidneys;
- heart muscle;
- respiratory system;
- skin cover;
- bone tissue;
- malfunctions in the central nervous system.
During the examination in the clinic, the listed diseases are usually detected with the help of examination, ultrasound, radiography, MRI and CT. After passing laboratory tests (general urine and blood tests, biochemical blood tests and blood tests for antinuclear antibodies and antibodies against DNA cells), we find:
- increased ESR and immunological parameters - ANF and antibodies to DNA;
- drop in total hemolytic activity of complement and its components SZ, C4.
With a moderate course, the body temperature does not exceed 37.4 ° C, the damage to the internal organs is not so critical. It:
- polyarthralgia or polyarthritis;
- skin irritation;
- nephritis without nephrotic syndrome and disruption of the organs of excretion;
- myocarditis and others.
The test results are the same as in the acute form, but the ESR indicator is slightly lower.
In chronic form:
- the general condition of the patient is good;
- there are mild signs of skin and articular syndromes;
- laboratory indicators indicate a slight deviation from the norm.
In the case of moderate severity or chronic form, periods of remission (relief) in a chaotic order are replaced by exacerbations. To predict when the stage of the disease begins, fraught with intense or moderate destruction of certain organs, is almost impossible.
The diagnosis of "systemic lupus erythematosus" is made if the patient has at least 4 of the following 11 symptoms:
- redness of the skin on the face in the form of a butterfly;
- scaly rash, causing atrophic processes in the skin and the appearance of scars;
- increased eruption after exposure to direct sunlight;
- painless ulceration of the mucous membranes of the mouth, nose and larynx;
- swelling and pain in the joints with the fact that their form remains the same;
- damage to the serous membranes of the lungs and heart;
- kidney damage, characterized by a periodic increase in the protein content in the urine;
- convulsions, frequent depression, psychosis;
- blood pathology;
- failures in immunity;
- increasing the titer of antinuclear bodies.
Systemic lupus erythematosus is also found in children, especially women. The symptoms of this disease are easily confused with other childhood illnesses. Parents should immediately lead the child to the doctor if most of these symptoms are observed:
- chills alternating with sweating;
- red spots on the face, resembling butterfly wings, which leave scars and pigmented traces;
- thinning and hypersensitivity of the skin;
- allergic rash that spreads to different parts of the body;
- at the tips of the fingers and palms there is a marked death of the blood vessels;
- fragility of the nail plate;
- pain in the knees and elbows;
- swelling of the feet and hands;
- persistent stomatitis;
- bouts of nausea;
- blurred vision;
- general dystrophy;
- nervousness, irritability, inadequacy of the child.
Types of the disease and medical diagnostic methods are the same for children and adults.
Is such a disease treated?
Completely get rid of this disease will not succeed. But it is possible to eliminate unpleasant symptoms and prevent a soonest sad outcome with the help of such means:
- corticosteroids for treating rashes;
- nonsteroidal and anti-inflammatory drugs against the pathologies of the musculoskeletal system and other organs;
- antimalarial medicines to relieve rash, muscle aches and pneumonia;
- preparations for artificially depressing immunity;
- maintaining a diet close to the nutrition of the ulcers;
- taking vitamins of group B and ascorbic acid;
- during remission - massage and therapeutic exercise.
If a butterfly-shaped rash appeared on the face, the general state of health worsened and visits to doctors about various diseases became more frequent, most likely, systemic lupus erythematosus is most likely to blame. This is a severe incurable pathology, but do not despair! Timely diagnosis and qualified assistance will help get rid of unpleasant sensations and significantly prolong life.