Systemic Lupus Erythematous
Systemic Lupus Erythematous (SLE) is a chronic autoimmune disease characterized by systemic inflammation. SLE has a complex, multifactorial genetic and environmental etiology affecting various organs, resulting in widespread loss of immune self-tolerance. Patients with SLE intermittently and unpredictably experience disease flares in which the immune system attacks the body.
This condition has been found to occur in all ages, with the majority of cases being between the ages of 10-50. Symptoms of SLE vary from person to person. The most common symptoms are headaches, fatigue, fever, joint pain and swelling, a butterfly-shaped rash across the nose and cheeks, hair loss, anemia, ulcers in the nose and mouth, photosensitivity, and water retention in the hands, feet and face.
Pharmaceutical treatments typically used to manage SLE contribute to further health risks. The first line of treatment for SLE in conventional medicine is drug prescription for specific symptoms, such as diuretics for fluid retention, aspirin for pain or corticosteroids for inflammation. Once the medications become ineffective in controlling the symptoms, a round of other serious drugs are prescribed that either modulate or suppress the immune system as a whole and lead to more dangerous side effects. This type of disease-centered treatment ignores the underlying cause of systemic inflammation and interconnectedness of all bodily systems.
With the use of Functional Medicine, our objective is to treat the underlying pathophysiology and support your immune system while avoiding unnecessary and dangerous side effects.
To effectively treat SLE, it is necessary to decrease systemic inflammation to improve symptoms and reduce risk for comorbidities commonly associated with SLE. It has been estimated that over 50% of patients with SLE have successfully utilized complementary and alternative medicine treatments to reduce symptoms and manage their health. Recent trials have shown that supplements such as vitamin D, omega-3-fatty acid, N-acetyl cysteine and turmeric show promise for reducing SLE disease activity.
Schedule and initial consultation today to return to treat you health condition.
Greco, Carol. “Updated Review of Complementary and Alternative Medicine Treatments for Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.” HHS Author Manuscripts. November 2014.