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Lupus Awareness Week 14-21 April 2001

19th of April 2001

Someone you know may have LUPUS …..
Systemic lupus is a presently-incurable illness of the immune system, a condition in which the bodys defence mechanism begins to attack itself through an excess of antibodies in the blood stream causing inflammation and damage to the joints, muscles and other organs. Discoid Lupus is usually a condition of the skin alone, but in a very few patients might develop to systemic lupus. The disease may be triggered by various means and can present in a bewildering number of ways, even to the extent of mimicking other diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis or multiple sclerosis. The cause of lupus is not positively known though research has provided evidence implicating heredity, hormones and infections including viruses.

Some 50,000 people may have lupus in the UK and 90% of sufferers are female, mainly between the ages of 15-55. With its many symptoms, lupus can be overlooked by the GP or consultant which may delay final diagnosis and a vital start to necessary treatment which can contain the disease and limit potential damage to the kidneys, heart, lungs or brain.

Lupus UK last year supported research by way of grants to the value of £263,000 and next year we have budgeted for £350,000. Following the successful booklet A Guide For Nurses, we have published a further book entitled LUPUS – A GP Guide to Diagnosis which was launched last November and has now been forwarded to every GP practice for their information.

There are collecting boxes in various locations throughout the village and any donation would be gratefully accepted. My thanks are conveyed to all those who have contributed to this cause over the past few years. Should you require any further information or a leaflet please contact Tony Rance on 01923 265199.

 
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