Access: Lupus Research -- Cutaneous Lupus
Research Summaries from 2011
Self-Reported Effects of Cutaneous Lupus on Quality of Life
Ultraviolet radiation from the sun can worsen symptoms of cutaneous lupus (CLE) and people with lupus may experience “photosensitivity.” The researchers interviewed CLE patients about their photosensitivity to help determine its effects on quality of life. Based on patient responses about their history of photosensitivity, patients were classified into one of three groups for purposes of comparison. Over half of all CLE patients included in the study reported experiencing photosensitivity, which had varying effects on quality of life. The results indicate that clinical interview questions can identify CLE patients with photosensitivity. Compliance with recommendations to avoid UV light exposure continues to be warranted in CLE patients.
Research Summaries from 2010
Hydroxycholoroquine May Protect Against Skin Involvement in Lupus
Many people with lupus develop skin rash early on in the course of their illness. This is especially true in people from minority populations, such as African-Americans and Hispanics. Anti-malarial drugs such as hydroxycholoroquine are not just used for skin involvement, but are widely prescribed for lupus patients due to their ability to reduce inflammation and delay the absorption of damaging ultraviolet light by the skin. In this study, researchers hoped to learn what factors have an impact on how much time it takes for a lupus patient to develop skin damage.
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Research Summaries from 2009
A Potential New Treatment for Severe Discoid Lupus
Discoid lupus is a form of lupus that affects the skin (cutaneous lupus). In most cases the discoid lupus rash appears on the face, neck, or scalp, though it can also show up on other areas of the skin. Severe discoid lupus may result in scarring. The treatments that are used most often for severe discoid lupus are strong immunosuppressants that may have significant side effects, especially when used over long periods of time. Efalizumab (trade name, Raptiva™) works by interfering with the function of overactive immune cells that are causing disease activity. The researchers in this study wanted to see if Raptiva could be effective in treating discoid lupus.
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Research Summaries from 2007
Scientists Exploring How the Interplay between UVB Rays and "Programmed Cell Death" May Promote Lupus Disease Activity
It is estimated that between 30 and 50 percent of people with lupus are sensitive to sunlight, especially ultraviolet B light (UVB). In these patients, exposure to UVB light can produce significant skin rashes, and in some cases can trigger a flare that involves other organs. One possible explanation for this disease activity is that the cleanup process that removes dead cells in the skin after exposure to UVB might be impaired. UVB rays can induce this process of cell death and removal, which is called "programmed cell death" or apoptosis. Scientists are now exploring how the interplay of UVB rays and apoptosis may promote lupus disease activity.
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