Top 7 Common Misconceptions about Lupus
Lupus is a type of autoimmune disease that can cause excessive inflammation. Around 2 million Americans alone suffer from lupus, with cases reported as early as middle age. Lupus is a Latin term that means wolf. This is because lupus causes the classic rash on the face that resembles that of wolves. Its name was given by a physician during the 12th century.
Through the years, numerous misconceptions have been formed about the disease. Let’s debunk these misconceptions for you to learn how to manage the condition better.
Misconception #1: Lupus Affects Women Alone.
Even though most of the patients with lupus are female, it should be noted that even men can suffer from lupus. This disparity is still waiting to be comprehended and explored.
Misconception #2: People Can Die from Lupus
If cases of lupus have been caught early on and treated in an aggressive manner, this will not lead to the patient’s death. However, there are a few severe cases that are known to cause heart or renal failure that are both potentially fatal.
Misconception #3: Hormone Replacement Therapy and Oral Contraceptives Can Lead to Lupus Relapses
One study conducted at John Hopkins University didn’t find any correlation between oral contraceptives and this disease. In 2002, it was discovered that hormone replacement therapy doesn’t have any effect on flare up or development of lupus.
Misconception #4: Women Who Have Lupus Should Refrain from Conception as It Can Cause Birth Defects
Over 50 percent of women who have lupus deliver normal and healthy babies. Proper prevention of flares and medical care can significantly reduce the risks of sick babies or birth defects. On extremely rare occasions, women who have System Lupus Erythematosus gave birth to babies who developed the condition later on, with half of them having heart defect as well.
Misconception #5: Aspartame Can Cause Lupus
It was only recently when the Lupus Foundation of America found the claim as completely untrue.
Misconception #6: Lupus Can be Transmitted Sexually or Contagious
This condition is not caused by a specific carrier such as bacterium, virus, or any similar infectious agent. This means that this is not transmittable from person to person. However, this could be passed on from the mother to the fetus. Therefore, the disease has a vertical transmission and not a horizontal one.
Misconception #7: Women Who Have Lupus Cannot Conceive
Women who have lupus can still get pregnant and more than half of them can deliver healthy babies. As mentioned earlier, it is very rare for lupus patients to give birth to babies that have heart defects or develop lupus. Women suffering from lupus should consult an obstetrician with enough experience in managing pregnancies with high risks.
To learn more important facts about lupus, it is a must for patients to visit a physician who is experienced and skilled when it comes to treating this condition. Patients may also find it beneficial to develop a strong and solid support system of family members, friends, and other patients with lupus.