Tuesday, May 05, 2009

LUPUS


Butterfly rash - common indicator of lupus (photo courtesy of MedicineNet.inc)

What is LUPUS? I am sure many of you out there are not aware of what LUPUS is. I myself only came to know about lupus last year when my colleague told me that her friend is suffering from an unknown disease that makes her weak and sick without knowing exactly what it is. Later she made a research on this matter and we have been talking about it.

A few months later, miraculously an association came to approach me, i.e. Lupus Malaysia to help support their event. Then, I remember about my colleague's friend and I did more research to understand it further. If not because of that, I would have not known about this type of sickness at all.

So what is LUPUS? Lupus is an autoimmune disease characterized by acute and chronic inflammation of various tissues of the body. Autoimmune diseases are illnesses that occur when the body's tissues are attacked by its own immune system. In a layman term, Lupus is a type of sickness that has no cure at the moment as we do not know in particular the cause or the right medicine to eliminate it from attacking one's body ammunition system. Read more here.

The easiest way and the most common symptom to identify lupus is the butterfly rash. A kind of red rash that appears on the nose and spreads like butterfly wings on the face. The rash is not itchy like pimples. It can be treated and healed without scars. However, lupus is a chronic disease, not to be taken lightly. Other common symptoms are joint pain, fatigue with no reasons, fever, photosensitive (sensitive of sunlight) and even hair loss.

Everyone has their own immune system that will fight diseases automatically via natural antibody. With lupus, your antibody will attack healthy tissues unrelated to any diseases. It can cause you problems of the skin, heart, lungs, kidneys, joints and even your nervous system (brain). Well... I am trying to explain this is a layman term because the article that I've read seems complicated enough and boring for some :)

The sad thing about lupus is that we do not know the exact cause of this disease. And we do not have an exact medication to treat the patient. I was amazed to know that some patients have to be wheelchair bound because their joints were too week to function anymore. Direct exposure to the sun will make the disease even worst for the patient. That leads Lupus Malaysia to organised the Walk-a-Payung on December, 14th 2008. With that event, I think a lot of Malaysians came to know about lupus.

In support of another of their event, I would like to urge all Malaysians to attend to their "Colours of Hope" children's art event as the following:

Date: 9th May 2009, Saturday
Event: COLOURS OF HOPE - Art event to mark PSLEM's World Lupus Day 2009
Venue: Ground Floor, Promanade (in front of Burger King & TGIF), 1 Utama Shopping Centre
Website: www.lupusmalaysia.org
Contact: 03-7957 7672/013-383 8644

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