It is difficult to believe that a disease can affect any part of your body and still be mostly hidden to the naked eye. But that’s the reality for the nearly 1.5 million Americans who live with some form of lupus.
Lupus is an autoimmune disease, meaning a person’s immune system starts to attack healthy cells and tissues. Nearly 70 percent of all causes of lupus are classified as systemic lupus, affecting a major organ or tissue, like the heart, lungs, kidneys, or brain, according to the Lupus Foundation of America.
“The immune system is unable to recognise what is part of the body and what is not,” explains rheumatologist George Stojan, MD, an assistant professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and co-director of the Hopkins Lupus Center.
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