HGF serves more than 200 people a month with the disease

The Hospital Geral de Fortaleza (HGF) released this Monday, 9, the balance sheet regarding the number of patients with lupus. According to the institution, per month, more than 200 people diagnosed with the disease are treated at the unit’s Lupus Outpatient Clinic. The data was released in allusion to the World Lupus Day, which is remembered this Tuesday, May 10. The date draws attention to the impacts of the disease and the need to diagnose and treat it early, in addition to encouraging increased research into its causes and cure.

Lupus is an autoimmune disease that causes the immune system to attack the body’s own tissues, causing damage to various organs, such as the skin, kidneys, heart, lungs and even the brain. “It is as if our immune system no longer tolerates these components that are natural to us, producing antibodies to attack these structures”, explains the head of the Rheumatology service at HGF, Walber Pinto Vieira.

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Sign it

The first signs of the disease usually appear with infections in the joints and face, producing from reddish spots to deeper wounds. Treatment for those with the diagnosis depends on the degree of symptoms. “In milder cases, we use anti-inflammatory medications. In the most serious cases, it is necessary to use immunosuppressants, medications that reduce the activity of the immune system”, the doctor details.

genetic predisposition

Despite not having a defined cause, studies point to a genetic predisposition. “It is believed that the disease is expressed due to the interaction between genetic and environmental factors”, says the rheumatologist. Walber Vieira also explains that absolute results were not found either to confirm the predisposition to environmental factors, such as viral and bacterial infections.

With low immunity, you have to be even more careful with infections. “When the patient is using these drugs, we recommend avoiding contact with sick people and we always recommend the use of a mask”, he explains.

Living with the disease

The rheumatologist at the HGF says that when a patient performs the treatment correctly, it is possible to live well with lupus. “Medications should be taken during the period of greatest disease activity until stabilization. After that, it is important to continue maintaining healthy lifestyle habits, such as a balanced diet, regular physical activity and restful sleep”, lists Walber Vieira.

Another essential factor to keep the disease under control is to avoid sun exposure. “This is one of the main triggers to activate the disease, leading the patient to have more inflammation. Therefore, we recommend not only abusing sunscreen, but really avoiding being exposed to the sun”, guides Vieira. To restore vitamin D levels, which is strongly linked to “sunbathing”, patients use supplementation.

how to get treatment

In cases of suspicion of the disease, it is advised to look for a Basic Health Unit (UBS) or Emergency Care Unit (UPAs). If the result is positive for lupus, the health unit itself makes contact with the Health Regulation Center of Ceará, which will direct the patient to the HGF.

Matter corrected based on indication of the source at 11:10 am on 05/10/2022

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