Basics for Better Living
- 70 percent of lupus pregnancies are successful.
- People with lupus are normally fertile but often don't conceive if there is inflammation.
- Kidney failure, severe hypertension, and myocarditis are strong reasons for not becoming pregnant.
- Women with antiphospholipid antibodies who have previously miscarried may be given aspirin or heparin during pregnancy.
- Mothers with anti-RO (SSA) antibody should be advised of a 5-15 percent risk of their child being born with a transient lupus rash or a more serious heart problem that can be detected with fetal ultrasounds at week 18 and 24.
- Find out what medicines are safe to take during pregnancy.
- Although most lupus activity decreases during the second trimester, mild post-delivery flares can occur.
Take Care Of Fevers Or Infections Promptly
- Call a doctor if your temperature is over 99.6°F. It could be a lupus flare or an infection.
- Up to 30 percent of people with lupus are allergic to sulfa drugs, so be careful before taking sulfa-based antibiotics. These drugs are usually prescribed for bladder and female-related infections. They tend to make people with lupus more sun-sensitive and can lower blood counts.
Cognitive Dysfunction, Cognitive Impairment, Or "Lupus Fog"
Some people with lupus will have difficulty remembering names and dates, balancing their checkbook, and processing thoughts. This is a reflection of vascular spasm which can reduce the amount of oxygen getting to the brain. These symptoms come and go. Cognitive therapy, which can help with these symptoms, may involve psychologists, speech therapists, and physical therapists who can help patients cope with this by initiating biofeedback and specific strategies to improve concentration.
Discuss Alternative Therapies With Your Lupus Specialist
- Biofeedback, relaxation techniques, and meditation are usually helpful.
- Certain herbs, vitamins, special diets, forms of massage, and chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation may help, harm, or have no effect on the disease.
- Note: There is no place for colonics in people with lupus, as bowel perforations have occurred.
- It is wise to consult with your lupus specialist before spending a lot of time, money, and energy on unproven alternative medical approaches.