Systemic Lupus Case Study

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Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Systemic Lupus Erythematosus is defined as a chronic inflammatory condition caused by an autoimmune disease in which the body mistakenly attacks its own healthy tissue (Williams, 2011). An abbreviation commonly used for Systemic Lupus Erythematosus is SLE. Lupus can affect various parts of the body. This includes the skin, joints, kidneys, blood, brain, heart, and lungs (Petri, 2003). This disorder cannot be cured, but treatment can help. The treatment goal is to improve the quality of life for the patient who suffers from the disease by controlling the symptoms and minimizing exacerbation of the disease.
Signs and Symptoms There are multiple signs and symptoms of the disease. Each case is different, and can
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In more severe cases, skin lesions can be biopsied and examined for signs of inflammation. Other tests to diagnose Systemic Lupus Erythematosus include ESR and ANA. ESR tests the erythrocyte sedimentation rate, or systemic inflammation. ANA titers test for the presence of abnormal antibodies. Anti-ds dNA and anti-sm antibodies are subtypes of ANA titers and can only be found in patients who have Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. Blood tests that use serine/arginine-rich proteins can also help in diagnosing SLE because patients make antibodies against SR proteins and the majority of patients react to the anti-SR antibodies. Cerebrospinal fluid can also show mild elevations in levels of proteins and lymphocytes (Petri, 2003). There are no laboratory tests that can confirm a diagnosis of SLE, but the results of these tests can greatly support the …show more content…
Minimizing exposure to the sun and UV light helps, and can be done by using sunscreen, protective clothing, and staying indoors whenever possible. Fatigue can be managed by scheduling periods of rest between daily activities, as well as ensuring the patient gets a minimum of 8 hours of sleep every night (Williams, 2011). Exercise, ROM, and warm baths can aid in joint pain and stiffness. In addition to these, compresses, assistive devices, eating healthy, and physical therapy can help with soreness and fatigue. Keeping the patient up to date on immunizations can help prevent opportunistic infections. Managing the patients’ psychological state is also important. Irregular hormones can exacerbate symptoms, so it is imperative for the patient to manage feelings of stress, anger, confusion, depression, etc. Conclusion Patients with SLE can live a relatively normal life if the symptoms are controlled. Working with patients to provide support and education can help to make them more able to cope with their disease and live a quality life. When a patient knows how to manage their disease, they are more likely to maintain a good lifestyle and experience remission. Having SLE does not mean that these patients have no control over their lives; they just have to learn how to control their

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