What is lupus?I have heard that it can be compared to AIDS.

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besure77 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Lupus and AIDS are completely different. When a person has AIDS, they have an immune system that is underactive which means it does not protect the body as it should. When a person has lupus, they have an immune system that is overactive. In addition, unlike HIV/AIDS, lupus is not contagious.

Lupus is an automimmune disease. It is chronic and capable of causing a person a great deal of pain. It can also attack any part of the body. It is almost always treated with medications although there are alternative medications and therapies available.

Autoimmune means your immune system cannot tell the difference between these foreign invaders and your body’s healthy tissues ("auto" means "self") and creates autoantibodies that attack and destroy healthy tissue. These autoantibodies cause inflammation, pain, and damage in various parts of the body.

dano7744 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Lupus or systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) ia an autoimmune disease with an idiopathic etiology. It is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects connective tissue and organ systems. For some unknown reason the body produces what is called autoantibodies that react with the persons antigens. This process produces widespread inflammation. The intimal layers of blood vessels may become inflammed, when this happens blood flow is limited and organ damage results from decreased oxygen levels.

Anyone can have lupus but it is most commonly seen in women of color during the childbearing years.. About 45% of people develop a very distinctive rash on the face called the "butterfly rash".

Treatment is supportive care and steroids to decrease inflammation. There is no cure for SLE. AIDS and SLE are really not the same at all, they are very different.

crmhaske eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Lupus is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system fails to distinguish between the body's tissues and foreign invaders.  Because of this the immune stem starts attacking otherwise healthy parts of the body itself leading to inflammation.

Lupus is in no way related to AIDS, and it is no contagious.

It is nine times more common in women than men, but men can develop the disorder.

There are three kinds of lupus - systemic, discoid and subacute cutaneous.  Systemic is the most common and it targets any bodily tissue.  Discoid and subacute cutaneous are less common, and they typically cause rashes to appear on the face, scalp, ears, arms or chest (discoid), or on the arms and upper body (subacute cutaneous).

Lupus is treated with medication.

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