Lupus is a common autoimmune disease that is diagnosed in an estimated 16,000 people each year.
Patients experience pain, extreme fatigue, cognitive issues, hair loss, and physical impairments, as well as facial rashes and painful joints. Because symptoms are common and fairly nonspecific, diagnosis can be delayed.

Lupus occurs more often in women of childbearing age, but is also diagnosed in men, children, and youths. It is more common in women of color – African American women, Latinas, Asians, Native Americans, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, and other Pacific Islander.

Lupus can be fatal. About 10%-15% of lupus patients will die due to complications of the disease.

Lupus is expensive. Annual direct care costs for lupus patients averaged over $12,000 in 2008, according to one study (Arthritis Rheum. 2008 Dec 15; 59(12): 1788–1795), while productivity loss in working-age patients was estimated at over $8,000.

Questions remain regarding lupus. What causes lupus? Genes play a role, but so do environmental triggers and hormones. What can be done to stave off lupus nephritis, a common and potentially deadly comorbidity? What are potential targets for investigational therapeutics? What can patients do to mitigate against lupus symptoms and thrive despite their chronic disease?

Featured Articles

Program aims to improve access, outcomes for high-risk patients

CHICAGO — A novel project designed to improve care quality and access for high-risk, high-cost lupus patients at a university medical center is reducing the outpatient no-show rate, hospitalization rate, and hospital length of stay.

With pop star’s help, scientists try to protect kidneys from lupus

Lupus devastated the kidneys of singer Selena Gomez. Now, she’s supporting a bid to armor the organs against the disease.

The impact of lupus on the next generation

Children born to mothers with systemic lupus erythematosus are not at greater risk of a rheumatic autoimmune disease but may be at increased risk of autoimmune diseases not rheumatic in origin, data from a population-based registry study shows.

Medicaid beneficiaries found poorly adherent to lupus medication 

Adherence to a primary therapy for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) among Medicaid beneficiaries is low overall and even lower among some specific groups identified by sociodemographic factors or other variables, according to an analysis of a Medicaid database.

Diagnosing lupus: ANA testing comes under scrutiny

Researchers found further evidence about how tests for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) can fail to detect certain cases, adding to a growing discussion about how to best diagnose this condition.