One of the most “overlapping” diseases when it comes to living with lupus, is scleroderma. About 20% of people who have scleroderma also suffer from lupus. It is important to learn more about both of these diseases, to better understand what you can expect.
Of course, the best way you can learn more about these diseases is to simply talk to your doctor. You can visit https://arthritiscare.com.au/service/lupus-systemic-lupus-erythematosus or simply search for a more local doctor instead.
Lupus can cause a lot of pain
What is scleroderma?
This is a rate and progressive condition. It happens when your immune system starts attacking healthy tissues by mistake. It will lead to damage and scarring on your skin, and even other organs. Scleroderma is an immune disorder, which means that the patients, who suffer from this disease, could have other autoimmune diseases, like lupus.
What is Lupus?
Lupus is an autoimmune disease, that also happens when your immune system starts attacking it sown organs and tissues. The inflammation that lupus causes can affect other body systems as well; such as your skin, kidneys, joints, bran, lungs, heart and blood cells. Lupus is very difficult to be diagnosed.
As it was mentioned, scleroderma and lupus have symptoms that overlap with each other. This is what makes them difficult to diagnose. Some of the most common symptoms of lupus are joint and muscle pain, as well as weakness and tiredness. Of course, there are other symptoms that can occur, like sensitivity to light, flu-like symptoms, rash on the skin, and others.
Some of the symptoms that overlap with each other are: Raynaud’s phenomenon, which will cause poor circulation and thus cold toes and fingers that will be painful, esophageal dysfunction, which is a dysfunction of the digestive system, and Sjögren’s syndrome, which affects glands that produce fluids, such as saliva and tear glands.
Diagnosis and treatment
Although lupus and scleroderma cannot be cured, the diseases can be managed. The treatment will always be different from one patient to the other. Sometimes a combination of treatments will work best, which all depends on your individual case. The first step to a proper diagnosis is having a thorough physical exam, as your doctor pays attention to your medical history and symptoms.
If you have symptoms that indicate scleroderma or lupus, your will be sent to blood testing as well. Every doctor has a different approach, so it all depends. If you are interested in the scleroderma treatment in Brisbane like arthritisCARE you can check it out, or you can simply talk to a local doctor to see what your options are.
Scleroderma and lupus have similar symptoms
It is crucial that you have an open talk with your doctor, and that you mention all the symptoms. This can help your doctor get to the diagnosis much faster. If you are not comfortable with the treatment your doctor recommended, do not be embarrassed to ask for a second opinion.