Lupus external symptoms can affect most body parts. Indeed, the skin is the most vulnerable body part that is affected by lupus related symptoms. These skin symptoms may appear as rash and lesions. In general, the skin rashes manifest themselves on the cheek and across the patient’s nose as slight blushes and several distinct reddish dots which are referred to as molar rashes. The skin rashes usually mark the start of the benign stage of the systemic lupus erythematosus.
One of the features of skin rashes is the appearance of thick patches on the skin that are usually red. These patches are the distinct feature of another type of lupus called discoid lupus erythematosus (DLE). In this type of lupus only the skin is involved and some of the external symptoms can include a change of skin color or pigmentation and rashes at various parts of the body including the limbs, the stomach, and the shoulders.
These external symptoms may vary from person to person and may last vary lengths of time, sometimes for years.
Sub-acute cutaneous lupus erythematosus (SCLE) is another form of lupus with distinct external symptoms. One of the symptoms from SCLE is coin shaped rash which most often occur in the back and upper part of the chest. In most cases, the scalp might be affected by the disease. This might be seen with an apparent loss of hair.
One last external symptoms of lupus is skin rashes due to sunlight sensitivity. These symptoms are apparent in all three major lupus forms.
Diagnosing External Symptoms of Lupus
Diagnosing lupus can be challenging because testing and observing patients in order to determine the exact treatment option can take months. These tests and observations are completed by watching for specific signs that only appears when one has lupus. Furthermore, lupus symptoms might imitate other diseases so your doctor must carefully sort through those possibilities as he or she tries to diagnose your symptoms.
The medical examination process for determining which type of lupus who have starts with an examination of your family history with a particular emphasis on any type of medication you are currently taking. Next, your doctor will administer a series of blood tests that search for the presence of antibodies and other lupus markers.