Tuesday, March 08, 2016

International Women's Day - What is Lupus?

This day marks the International Women's Day and I take this opportunity to wish all women all around the world, a Happy #IWD2016

I also wish to use this day to answer a question not many people ask.
What is lupus?

The first time I heard about lupus was on a reality show. One of the contestants had it and curiosity had me reading up on it. I thought I knew so much about it until two weeks ago when I found out a friend of mine had the condition. From what she told me, I realised I did not know as much as I thought I did.

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system attacks normal healthy tissue. Basically, the body attacks itself. This results in symptoms like inflammation, swelling and damage to organs of the body. Any part of the body can be affected by lupus such as the skin, joints, brain, lungs, kidneys, blood vessels and other internal organs. Needless to say quite a number of the known cases result in death.

Why do I choose to talk about lupus today? Because chances of developing lupus are higher in women. Other risk factors include age and ethnicity. Persons of African or Asian descent between the ages of 15 and 45 years are more at risk of developing the condition. Sadly, few people know about this condition. If known cases result in death, what about the unknown cases? What about those who do not know they have it?

Let us spread the word. Let us get the information out there, and hopefully save a life. Let us love our women. Let us create the awareness of this condition. Awareness which is not quite out there yet.

Kudos, to Wilhemina Halm Danso and the Oyemam Autoimmune Foundation.
You are a fighter Mina, and on this day, I celebrate you, your fight against lupus and your fight to create awareness.

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