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Lupus

Friend with lupus nephritis

04/23/2001

Question:

My best friend has just been diagnosed with lupus nephritis. She`s been away at college and I haven`t seen her in a while. WIth her returning home i`m a littled worried about changes in her. How does lupus nephritis affect a person both physically and mentally?

Answer:

Lupus nephritis is a serious disease that can be controlled effectively. The treatment, however, may require very close monitoring and attention by the physician and the patient. Until the disease is controlled, patients may feel tired all the time, may have aches and pains, may feel depressed; just the the knowledge of having a chronic disease, with all the implications on social, personal and financial aspects may have an enormous impact on a person. Sometimes, the illness itself or its treatment may cause some changes such as some hair loss. Family and friends can play a VERY IMPORTANT ROLE by being supportive and by `being there`. It is important for you to understand that with treatment, attention and help, most people with lupus nephritis can lead a normal life. Many people who have lupus may look perfectly fine from the outside, and by looking at the person, it may be difficult to tell if he or she has any problem. Most people with lupus may need some life-style changes, such as avoiding direct sun light, avoiding infections, no smoking, etc.

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Response by:

Ram Raj   Singh, MD Ram Raj Singh, MD
Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati