Rheumatology clinic

Systemic lupus erythematosus: challenging for both diagnosis and management

KATRINA PAVIC, Sean O’Neill

Figures

© JULIIA TOCHILINA/ ISTOCKPHOTO.COM
© JULIIA TOCHILINA/ ISTOCKPHOTO.COM

Abstract

Despite improvements in the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus in recent years, patients can still suffer profound morbidity, with significant impact on quality of life. A coordinated approach to management is crucial.

Article Extract

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a multisystem autoimmune disease of unknown cause that can present with a variety of clinical manifestations.1,2 The most common symptoms and signs include fatigue, rashes and arthralgias, but any organ system can be involved (Figure 1).3 The wide-ranging and nonspecific nature of these symptoms may make early diagnosis challenging and contribute to problems with both under- and overdiagnosis. SLE more commonly affects women of childbearing age, as well as people of certain ethnic backgrounds, such as Asian and African people.4 In Australia, it affects Aboriginal people more commonly than non-Aboriginal people.4

Figures

© JULIIA TOCHILINA/ ISTOCKPHOTO.COM
© JULIIA TOCHILINA/ ISTOCKPHOTO.COM