Although lupus affects people of all ages, it is more commonly diagnosed in women between the ages of 15 and 44 with a prevalence in African-Americans, Hispanics, and Asian-Americans.
There is no singular test for lupus. In diagnosing lupus in a patient, doctors use a combination of blood and urine tests, signs and symptoms, physical examination and health history.
The cause of lupus in most cases is unknown, However, persons with an inherited predisposition for lupus may develop the disease after coming in contact with certain triggers like puberty, menopause, childbirth, sunlight or trauma.
The signs and symptoms of lupus vary widely from one patient to another and usually manifest as symptoms of many other diseases. In some cases lupus symptoms may even come and go and can take several years to receive an official diagnosis.
A lupus “flare” or “flare up” is when one or more lupus symptoms in a patient worsens causing them to be really sick as a result.
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After major lupus flares, some people experience remission with their symptoms becoming inactive or mild throughout their lives. However, in other people, lupus will remain in a long-lasting chronic state through their lives.