Are There Treatments Available For Lupus?

Are There Treatments Available For Lupus?

Lupus is a very complicated condition.  It is expected that 1.5 million Americans are living with lupus.  A majority of these people develop the condition before they are 50 years old.  While lupus is very difficult to live with, one of the most difficult parts of the disease is the diagnosis process.  Many patients go years before being accurately diagnosed.  This is mainly because there is not a single test to diagnose lupus.  There is no cure for lupus.  Rather, treatment is primarily focused on relieving symptoms caused by the condition.

There are a variety of different treatments that exist for those suffering from lupus.  One of those treatments is nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.  These drugs, either over the counter, or prescription, can help control pain caused by swelling and inflammation in lupus patients.  Strangely enough, antimalarial drugs can be used to help those suffering from lupus.  For some reason, it works with the immune system to suppress lupus flare-ups.  In addition, corticosteroids can be used as treatments for lupus.  Corticosteroids help to counteract the inflammation that causes a lot of issues related to lupus.  This can help to relieve pain and make the patient more comfortable overall.  In addition to the above-mentioned treatment options, some patients with lupus are given immunosuppressants.  This helps suppress the immune system, thus lessening the side effects of lupus.  However, immunosuppressants can make a patient more likely to contract other diseases.  Therefore, patients on immunosuppressants must be watched closely by their treating physician.

Other than medication, there are not many other treatment options for those who have lupus.  Certain lifestyle modifications can be beneficial.  This includes everything from avoiding too much sunlight to exercising, not smoking, and eating a healthy diet.  There are certain alternative treatments that patients feel help, such as acupuncture and fish oil supplements.  There are also clinical trials for various medications available.  However, lupus is a unique experience for each affected patient.  Patients typically need to work very closely with their doctor for years before finding a treatment regimen that works for their specific situation.  Fortunately, stem cell therapy has shown some promise in the field of lupus treatment.  However, there is still a lot more research that needs to be done before it is widely used and accepted.

Lupus is a very complicated disease.  It is not fully understood how people contract it, why some people develop it and others do not, or even how to adequately diagnose and treat it.  With so many uncertainties and questions, patients are left without answers.  This, along with spending years searching for adequate treatment, can be extremely frustrating and make patients feel hopeless.  Fortunately, there are a variety of different treatments available that can address symptoms and help patients live better lives than they would without treatment.  But better is not enough.  There is hope that through more research in the field of stem cell therapy, that one day, there may be not just a treatment, but a cure for those who have lupus.

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