Medicines can't cure
lupus, but they
can control many symptoms and often can prevent or slow organ damage.
Medicine treatment for lupus
often involves reaching a balance between preventing organ damage, having an acceptable quality of life, and
minimizing side effects. You will need to see your doctor often to see how you're doing and check for medicine side effects.
Living with lupus can have a profound effect on a person’s mental and emotional well-being. You may have recently been diagnosed with lupus, or you may have been living with it for years. Either way, you are likely to have experienced mental and physical problems such as difficulty concentrating or sleeping. You are also likely to have felt emotions such as grief, fear, anxiety, and depression.
These feelings are common. Understanding where they come from can help you develop techniques for...
Your doctor may have to change the dose and
combinations of medicines until you reach the best possible balance.
If you have mild disease or symptoms that affect your
quality of life but you don't have organ-threatening problems, your doctor may
Acetaminophen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
(NSAIDs), sometimes in combination with antimalarial
drugs. Acetaminophen and NSAIDS are often enough to reduce symptoms.
Antimalarial drugs such as hydroxychloroquine
Low-dose corticosteroids and/or corticosteroid creams or ointments.
If you have more severe disease, your doctor may
Corticosteroids, such as
Immunosuppressive medicines, such as
azathioprine, belimumab, cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, or mycophenolate mofetil.
If you have had blood clots in a vein or
artery (venous or arterial thrombosis), or have
antiphospholipid antibody syndrome, which increases
your risk for blood clots, your doctor may prescribe a blood thinner
(anticoagulant). This is especially important if you
already have blood clots. Aspirin is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is sometimes used to slow blood clotting
antiphospholipid antibody syndrome.
What to think about
lupus medicines, like acetaminophen and prednisone, are considered safe
during pregnancy. Others may not be. You may not be able to stop taking lupus
medicines after becoming pregnant. Or you may need to start taking medicines
for a symptom flare. If possible, talk to your doctor
before becoming pregnant so you can learn about the effect lupus may
have on your pregnancy.
Because corticosteroids are powerful medicines and can
cause serious side effects, your doctor will recommend the lowest dose that will
give the most benefit.
Some people with lupus are sensitive to antibiotic medicines
called sulfonamides (sulfa medicines). These include Bactrim, Septra, and many
others. Your doctor can prescribe medicines that don't contain sulfa, if
People with lupus can go
remission. If this happens to you,
your doctor may cut back your medicine over time or stop your medicine.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
September 09, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this