“Contrary to popular opinion, Lupus can be fatal. Many times the cause of death is not listed as lupus, but the condition such as stroke, heart attack, pneumonia, kidney failure or seizure was caused by a complication of lupus.“
One never knows when lupus may strike. One minute you’re fine. One can go for months at a time without having a flare- often times allowing one to forget that they’re even sick (at least in my case). But then it strikes. And it comes like a thief in the night seeking to destroy you and take all that you have. Sometimes lupus can be bearable, it can be manageable, and at other times it’s unbearable and for some cases, fatal.
I’ve had chest x-rays that revealed the pneumonia I developed and lasted for nearly a month without my knowledge. I’ve had decreased breathing due to lung issues– pleurisy, or fluid in and around my lungs (a complication of lupus), I’ve had a MRI of my brain that determined I had cerebellar tonsillar ectopia (the cause of my intense headaches) in which I have to check the progression of every 3 months. I’ve gone from having a thick, full, head of hair, to having thin, patchy hair with spots at the core of my scalp that I will NEVER regain hair in (drastic hair loss). And for the first time in 26 years, I’ve had to wear glasses because of retinal vascular lesions.
Bad right? But I guess it could always be worse.
Lupus is slowly TRYING to eat away at my lungs, my brain, my hair and my eyes. But I won’t let it become fatal. I won’t let it get the best of me. Guys, let’s get to KNOW LUPUS! Let’s make sure no one else has to endure this. Let’s come together, bring awareness and search for a cure.
Lupus Fact Sheet from Lupus Research Institute, Fun Facts & Stats from LupusAwareness.webs.com/Wikipedia, and the Lupus Foundation of America
*Images courtesy of me.