Fever is often a part of lupus. For some people with lupus,
an intermittent (coming and going) or continuous low-grade fever may be normal.
Other people, especially those on large doses of aspirin, nonsteroidal
anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), or corticosteroids, may not have fever at all
because these drugs may mask a fever.
If you have lupus, you may be more vulnerable to certain
infections than are other people without lupus. In addition, you may be more
prone to infection if you are taking any immunosuppressive drugs for your
lupus. Be alert to a temperature that is new or higher than normal for you,
because it could be a sign of a developing infection or a lupus flare.
I had always been an athletic, healthy person, but in my late 30s my body
started sending signals that something was wrong. I was tired all the time. I
had no energy. I even started losing my hair.
When I went to my doctor, the staff ran blood tests, but nothing ever
pointed to a specific diagnosis. I lost weight. I couldn't keep food
down. I developed a butterfly-shaped rash on my face. I saw other doctors; they
thought it was all in my head, and, for a time, they didn't believe I was
Take your temperature at least once a day (or more often if needed) to
determine what a "normal" temperature is for you.
Take your temperature and watch for a fever any time you feel chills or do
not feel well.
Call your doctor immediately if you have a new or higher-than-normal
Even if you don't have a fever, don't hesitate to call your doctor if you
do not feel well in any way, particularly if you are taking aspirin, NSAIDs, or
a corticosteroid. Signs of infection other than a fever include unusual pain,
cramping or swelling, a headache with neck stiffness, cold or flu symptoms,
trouble breathing, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or changes in urine or
"The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin
Diseases of The National Institutes of Health. Fever and Lupus. Last revised,
January 26, 1999. (Online)