Lady Gaga has admitted to being diagnosed with a borderline positive case of lupus, which runs in her family. It would appear that Lady Gaga could have a difficult problem to deal with. So what is this mysterious lupus disease?
We tend to think of genetic diseases like a death sentence we are doomed to suffer with. But that is an old way of thinking about how we inherit diseases. We know that genes are turned on or off depending on what our lifestyles are. You could think of it this way, if we live the lifestyles of our parents we are more likely to get their diseases. But changes we make in how we eat, exercise, manage stress, and eliminate toxins and chemicals from our bodies can contribute to our ability to change how our body responds.
Lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus, or SLE) is an autoimmune disease, that means the immune system that normally attacks foreign substances like bacteria or viruses, is attacking normal tissue in the body. The symptoms of lupus can be common to or be caused by other autoimmune diseases like hypothyroidism.[i] The patient may initially be fatigued, have vague fevers and joint pain.
It may be that there are external environmental factors that trigger the patient with a genetic history of this disease. According to WebMD, “Despite the nearly identical genetic makeup of identical twins, the probability of the unaffected twin developing the disease if the other twin has it is around 30-50 percent or less. This implies that environmental factors may help determine whether or not the disease develops in a person.”
Lupus is often treated with drugs that can complicate and compromise the immune system.[ii] It is important to address the external factors that may contribute to the disease. One of the known factors is exposure to chemical toxins. This means making sure the body is able to eliminate chemical exposures and reduce substances that increase inflammation is one approach to treating lupus. This is an individual matter to be assessed by a health practitioner trained in treating environmental illness.
Lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus, or SLE) is an autoimmune disease, meaning the immune system attacks the body’s own tissues as though they were foreign substances. Lupus is not contagious. No one knows what causes it; it is still a mystery. There are most likely a combination of factors that can trigger it and those can be different for each person. Some medications are suspected triggers. Viral infections such as Hepatitis C can eventually lead to lupus symptoms.
It’s probably a good bet that Lady Gaga is getting the best care possible. She’s smart enough to seek more than one opinion or treatment option. You should do the same. In my practice I check for all factors that may contribute to lupus. One medicine that I have used with success in several cases has over a hundred years of documentation in treating lupus. It is Hydrocotyle asiatica, an Indian herb known as Gotu Kola. It has been used in both Ayurvedic and Homeopathic medicine. A comprehensive plan from your health care practitioner is the best way to deal with your situation.
Your doctor may begin to test for lupus by ordering an ANA (Antinuclear antibody) test. This is not a definitive test, other diseases can have a positive ANA test, but it is the first step in finding out if you might have lupus.[iii] A positive test should be followed by a visit to a rheumatologist for a confirmation.
[i] Sahin, Garip et al. Autoimmune hypothyroidism and lupus-like syndrome.
Journal Rheumatology International. Volume 30, Number 4 / February, 2010
[ii] Lange, Andrew. How Thyroid Medications Can Destroy Your Thyroid. Huffington Post December 8, 2009. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-andrew-lange/how-thyroid-medications-c_b_358564.html
[iii] For more information on testing for lupus: http://www.saveonlabs.com/products/Antinuclear-Antibodies-%28ANA%29-Comprehensive-Profile.html