DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Lupus rash. Rash on a 51 year old woman's chest caused by systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). SLE is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system attacks connective tissue in the skin and internal organs as if it were foreign, causing inflammation. Symptoms include a blotchy red rash on the skin and feverish illness with loss of appetite and joint pain. Inflammation may also affect the kidneys, lungs, heart and brain, sometimes with fatal results. The disease subsides and recurs with varying degrees of severity. Corticosteroids and anti-inflammatory drugs may relieve symptoms, but there is no cure. Lupus erythematosus mainly affects women.
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