Treatment depends on the organ systems affected by Lupus and the severity of the disease. Some patients have a mild form of Lupus. Their mild symptoms of inflammation can be treated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) and aspirin. Severe skin rashes and joint problems may respond to a group of medications usually used to treat malaria. More severely ill patients with potentially life-threatening complications (including kidney disease, pericarditis, or nervous system complications) will require treatment with more potent drugs, including steroid medications. Because steroids have serious side effects, they are reserved for more severe cases of Lupus. Drugs that decrease the activity of the immune system (called immunosuppressant drugs) may also be used for severely ill Lupus patients. These include azathioprine and cyclophosphamide.
Other treatments for Lupus try to help specific symptoms. Clotting disorders will
require blood thinners. Psychotic disorders will require specific medications. Kidney
failure may require the blood to be cleaned outside the body through a machine (dialysis)
or even a kidney transplantation.
Drugs used in Lupus treatments
Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) These drugs, such as aspirin and ibuprofen, are usually recommended for muscle and joint pain, and arthritis.
Acetaminophen A mild analgesic used for pain, such as Tylenol.
Corticosteroids Synthetically produced corticosteroids, such as Prednisone, are used to reduce inflammation and suppress activity of the immune system.
Antimalarials These drugs, such as Plaquenil, are prescribed for skin and joint symptoms of lupus. It may take months before these drugs demonstrate a beneficial effect.
Immunomodulating Drugs These drugs, such as Imuran and Cytoxan, act in a similar manner to the corticosteroid drugs in that they suppress inflammation and tend to suppress the immune system.
Biologic Drugs These drugs include agents that block the production of specific antibodies, like those against DNA, or agents that act to suppress the manufacture of antibodies through other mechanisms.
Lupus treatments - Lifestyle changes
People with lupus can make lifestyle adjustments that help fight the disease and provide an improved sense of well being. Preventive measures can reduce the risk of flares.
Butterfly Rash Picture
This web site is intended for your own informational purposes only. No person or entity associated with this web site purports to be engaging in the practice of medicine through this medium. The information you receive is not intended as a substitute for the advice of a physician or other health care professional. If you have an illness or medical problem, contact your health care provider.
Arthritis-Symptom.com is an informational out reach of the Consumer Health Information Network. It is our goal to provide up to date information about arthritis and other inflammatory and bone conditions in a easy to understand format.