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Lupus Foundation of America Chat with Mayo Clinic Dr. Vai Chowdhary, 5/23/12

Lupus Foundation of America Facebook chat with Mayo Clinic rheumatologist Vai Chowdhary, M.D., for Lupus Awareness Month, May 23, 2012



    Lupus Foundation of America: Our chat will start in 30 minutes. Please join and feel free to post your questions for Dr. Chowdhary here.


    Allison McCalla: can i post my question now? or would you prefer we wait 30 min?


    LisaMarie Campagna Bower: Will the Lupus rash occur in other places then the face? And how long could / does it last?

    Victoria Zilisch: is there a specific test that can be done to determine if kidneys are not functioning properly?

    Rachel Fxckdisshxt Can you have discolored patches of skin that itch like a rash?


    Brenda Miller: What are some good suggestions to do when you feel the soring around the mouth and ears and nose starting to come out?


    DeeDee Manning: Is there a presription cream to "tone down" the itchy red butterfly rash?


    LisaMarie Campagna Bower: Does the sun effect lupus patients that are NOT on medications ?


    Angie Siedell: I have heard very conflicting opinions on this but I am curious for one more opinion - I was diagnosed with SLE about 8 years ago. After a few pretty terrifying flare ups (my brain is most effected, as well as joints during flares) the disease was inactive for a few years. I got pregnant with my son in Sept. 2009 and was weaned off all harmful medications. By my third trimester the disease became active again and I experienced all of the usual symptoms of previous flares and a bunch more. My question is, that since I had such a bad flare while pregnant, is it possible that it could cause the disease to be passed on to my son (now 2) and should I have him tested frequently for early signs of any issues?

    Shirley Gernes: Have you heard of anyone elses armpits hurting w/ fatigue? Thank you.

    Candi Roberts: What lupus medications are safe to take during pregnancy? Plaquenil? Gabapentin? Prednisone? Others? Thanks.

    Kimberly M. Jones: What, if anything can be done if my white count has been affected & is extremely low 1.4? My Dr. is afraid for me to be on meds like methotrax due to the side-effects of lowering my WBC even more.

    Cynthia Lattig: I have Lupus and a year ago was diagnosed with sma syndrome. Are the 2 related in any way?

    Toni Crump: Could Lupus be the cause of my early Menapause?

    Victoria Zilisch: What can lupus patients do to enhance their memory?

    Kiesha Smartt: My mom has discoid lupus, she was diagnosed in 98. She is severely scarred and her hair is falling out. What can she do to help her hair and hopefully grow some of it back? Also any tips on how to minimize the scars/lesions?

    Suzy Milone Kieran: After my 2nd pregnancy I had horrible joint pain and tested positive for Lupus. BUT the arthritis they saw was erosive and more Rheumatoid. A year and half after the diagnosis I was re-tested and the results of the double stranded dna test did not show a positive Lupus result. Is this common? Can I expect to go back and forth with results? How is it possible to test positive then not? Is it common for after pregnancy?

    Jackie Hochstein: I was dignosed with lupus 3 months ago and on plaquenil but I dont feel any better my hands still hurt.Is there a better medication? and is there away to find a good doctor in mn my doctor i have is not helping me out and has not explained to me what will happen next.

    Melissa Lionetto Baker: Can lupus cause gastroparesis? I've been unable to tolerate solids for over a year with no answers. It presents almost like a pseudo-obstruction.

    Heather Besaw Williams: What is your opinion on long term steriod therapy. I have been on Prednisone for 2 years now down to 3mg. Well controlled at present.

    Andrea Mino Bonazzoli: What are the effects of plaqunill on teeth and gums?

    Donna Fedor Twichell: What effect does being overweight have on lupus? Will lupus go away if you lose weight? Or will the lupus get better? I'm very overweight and have had non-lupies tell me that's all I need to do, lose weight. I don't believe it, but would like your professional opinion so I can tell/show them.

    Carla Schultz: Is it possible to have a positive ANA and before taking any meds come up with a negative ANA a couple years later?

    Lupus Foundation of America: ‎Allison McCalla: go ahead and start posting questions now!

    Tawne Nelson: Whats the relation between lupus and pericarditis?? Does this mean lupus has affected my heart??

    Tristin Fowler I was diagnosed with Lupus a couple of years ago. I recently had a brain MRI that showed severe MS lesions on my brain. Can you have MS and Lupus?

    Brittney Bailey After being diagnosed with lupus how would a further diagnosis of MCTD be made? How are the symptoms of lupus and early symptoms of scleroderma differentiated? I feel like my Rheumatologist is watching out for it because even she said that my ILD is not very common in lupus and is more common in Scleroderma. I also show signs of Sjogrens and have had flare ups of myositis and vasculitis. I tested high for RNP which I know is related to MCTD as well. Thank you.

    Julia Bassett I have lupus and was on all kinds of meds and nothing really worked or I had allergic reactions to them so I don't take any thing at all now. Is that good or bad? I feel better off meds

    Marideli Lopez What do you recommend for fatigue associated with SLE? Lupus runs in my family. What is the probability of my daughters getting it if I have it and my brother had it?

    Terry Klemp Dr. Regina Chowderhy is my rheumatologist and she is great!!

    Allison McCalla I have been to multiple drs. and they have been unable to figure me out except to say that it is not MS "at this time" and that i do have raynauds. however my dermatologist was stumped and had the derm that runs the practice come see my painful itchy rash. he took one look and said 95% sure that i have a lupus variant based on a slow spreading rash behind my ear I have had for 3 years. He mentioned possible tumid lupus but said he thinks i also possiby show signs of systemic involvement. extreme fatigue, "brain fog", joint pain, swollen feet/ankles, brain lesions, throat issues, sun sensitivity, and of course the rash. etc. I am ANA negative. Is it posible to have a variant of lupus that has some systemic involvement and be ANA negative? or is it more likely to have tumid lupus with no systemic involvement and something else is causing all my other symptoms? I cant get into a rheumatologist until 3 months from now...

    Cynone Miller is there a special diet

    Patricia Sayles I was taking prednisone and it was helping me a lot I felt better then ever I had to slowly come off it
    and I am started taking plaqunil. I don't think it really helps me. I feel pretty crappy. I don't really know exactly what my diagnosis is. As of now my DR circled arthritis nos on a sheet that I had at my last visit. I have a lot of symptoms of lupus and my grandmother and mother both have lupus. I have had positive ANA's since I was 9 years old. I have fibromyalgia as well. I wish I could figure out what my doctor thinks is going on with me. I have an appointment next week. I know this isn't a question, but I will think of one.

    Leslie Wright I have uctd and fibro. my sympt and labs show lupus, but its not been "long" enough yet, and the rheum. Still wants to debunk the thought. Why are drs so quick to shove seizures, circulation/discoloration problems of arms and legs on anxiety?

    Lisa Angel I get really really hot outside at this time of year and I suspect it is due to my Lupus meds. Do you have any suggestions how not to overheat besides just staying indoors?

    Christy M. Parshall Is there a suppliment I can take for loosing my eyesite from the hydroxychloroqyine? Also, when getting bladder and kidney infections almost monthly now...does that mean I am at risk already that my kidneys are failing?

    Rhonda Prescher Does Lupus cause heat intolerance?

    Jennifer Petrarca- Garcia Have you seen any success treating lupus with alternative treatmeants,diet change and excersize? I'm very sensitive to almost all medication and have made the choice to treat my symptoms naturally. Thank you and God bless

    Karon L. Beasley Doctor now wants Methothrexate for joint pain, major joint swelling, nervous system involvement, cognitive impairment, numbness, I have not taken it yet, my question is WILL this HELP with FATIGUE? It is a serious drug. Dr. took labs but said they would not matter with her decision. Can you explain?

    Shemone LovinLife Williams Lupus ruins my skin.Is there any products that fade away the dark spots left after a rash and lesions??

    Anne Flynn Beddingfield My complaint with lupus is itching from the top of my head to the bottom of my feet with no relief from meds. Please HELP!

    Dotty Higgins I was diagnosed with lupus a year ago and what a ride it has been! I am 26, is there any evidence that suggests the younger you are diagnosed, the worse and faster the disease progresses? I just want to know what else I can prepare for and if I can still have healthy children and have the energy to keep up with them?

    Tiffany Peterson Where is the chat taking place?

    Kimberly Terry-Rivera Is lupus hereditary ,and does it effect your memory?

    Stacy Catoe Is it possible to have positive ana and positive sjorgrens and not have sle? I have no symptoms. I have no photosensitivy, aches, rashes...nothing. I do have purple feet..not blue, and some hair loss, which seems normal now that its cut short. All other labs were normal, yet I have been diagnosed with sle. Have been off of Plaquenil for 4 weeks and seem to be okay. Any advice?

    Annet Rijk Can nausea be a sign of an upcoming flare?

    Amanda Donnar Owensby How common is it to have a negative ANA, but a positive DS-DNA? And what can explain that?

    Lupus Foundation of America ‎Tiffany Peterson The chat will take place on this thread and will start at 2!

    Lisa Bernal My daughter was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis fas been under the care of a Rheumatologist is it possible for her to have Lupus? My mom passed away from Lupus in 2010.

    Vicki Waddell Can lupus cause almost kidney failure and then clear up after a couple months?

    Karen Swain Reed I've had lupus for 16 years and a couple months ago my rhuemy told me i was in "medication remission" cuz blood work was ANA negative. She won't take me over any meds. Been on meds the entire 16 years. Is this possible? Never heard of it. Thank you!!!

    Tiffany Peterson I would like to ask Dr. Vai Chowdhary this, "What does it mean when a patient has a positive ANA along with all of the diagnostic criteria symptom markers for months and then one month their blood work tests negative for ANA. When a patient's ANA switches between negative and positive is this protocol for rheumatologists to remove the lupus diagnosis and declare they do not have lupus because their blood work is negative? I ask because this question is prevalent amongst many patients and we need an answer!

    Vicki Waddell Is it possible for the lab tests to go back and forth being positive and negative?

    Kymonique Hill What is a good diet i can follow i have gained so much weight from the steroids?

    Patricia Sayles I have photosensitivity, aches, rashes, and I think my Dr. thinks I have sjorgrens. I get patiki or whatever it is called when you have like broken blood vessels. I get them on my right hand and recently it has been starting to go up my arm. My eyes always hurt and feel dry and I am constantly feeling very thirsty and my throat feels like in a knot sometimes. My hands are really bad. They hurt a lot. They get tingly and burn and sometimes feel like they are vibrating. They get really puffy and swollen sometimes and it is hard to move them. The winter makes my hands worse. When they get cold they are really painful even if I am wearing gloves. Where is the chat going to be?

    Dionne Sparrow Is scalp pain, soreness and tenderness an associated symptom of lupus and or fibromyalgia (i have been diagnosed with both) and is a burning tingling sensation in the upper legs an associated symptom of either of the two?

    Lupus Foundation of America Good afternoon everyone! Thanks for joining our lupus chat with Mayo Clinic. Today’s chat will last an hour. In that time, Dr. Chowdhary will respond to as many questions and comments as she can. Welcome Dr. Chowdhary

    Kathy M. Jays I was diagnosed with SLE in 2007; however, I have had lupus like symptoms for years. I also have Anti-phospholipid syndrome which I was told was caused from the lupus. I have had to have a mitral-valve replacement and I have a non-functioning thyroid. My last few tests have come up good for my kidney and liver function. Recently my legs have been swelling and are red and inflamed by the end of the day. When I showed my Rheumatologist he told me to lay off the salt. I do not use salt when I cook and I do not add salt to my meals—I tend to use pepper instead. (I told this to my Dr.) Could the swelling be caused from anything else?
    For years I went to one Dr. after another and most of them told me it was in my head. It wasn’t until something life-threatening happened before I could get someone to listen to me. I really do not want the same thing to happen this time. I believe I have used up my nine lives.

    Betsy I. Crowder-Moore Allison McCalla if you get any info please let me know cause I have also the same issues as u! It is driving my Drs crazy and cant get a Rhemy to see me cause of my lack of insurance and my neg ANA!

    Tiffany Peterson THIS is where the actual chat is happening!?!?!?! on THIS comment thread???

    Jesica Gronau ‎@ Allison McCalla - I also have MANY of the same symptoms, major painful rash/skin issues!! Medical mystery!! They can't figure it out, the only thing we have different is that my ANA comes back with super high positive results but nothing on any of my other labs!!

    Dianne Ariondo I have lupus I have had for over 20 yrs but was not diagnosed till about 12yrs ago it has affected my heart nervous system and my head goes numb and so on I had MRI on my brain but never EEG the MRI is always normal I am getting first EEG Saturday can it show other things wrong than the MRI and is there a special heart test I can get to detect what is going on and is there meds that help with seizure / neurological problems that won't effect my diabetes that at this time from 75 lb weight loss I control with diet pls help answer these questions the stress from loosing my 22 yr old son 11 months ago in a tragic car accident over the hill from home has made my condition way worse any stress relieving advise would also be appreciated thank u

    Vai Chowdhary Good afternoon! It is a great privilege to be here. I'm looking forward to your questions.

    Michele Schloegl Etter I had high ANA dr said lupus went to rheumatologist he doesn['t want to put it on paper. treating me for Rheumotoid arth. isn't working now having pain in breast area. have been on steroids for over 3 years varing amounts 5mg-40mg currently on 20mg could this be part of my problem? Help!

    Vai Chowdhary I'm seeing a lot of questions about skin lupus. A few points. No. 1: Lupus rash can affect areas other than face, such as the back, chest, abdomen, etc. No. 2: Several creams like steroids, tacrolinus and retinoic acid can help with the redness of the rash. Sun can definitely cause lupus flares.

    Patricia Sayles they really never want to diagnose someone with lupus it seems. It has been taking me forever to get this far. I still feel like crap most of the time. I can't even work because I am constantly getting sick.

    April Haworth I take 9 meds and am house bound due to seizures and Sjogrens and lupus they put me on depression medication and now I am twice as foggy.. I also am in bed more than i am up and about I have gained 80 pounds in two years .. cant exercise due to the pain.. life line?

    Lupita Sedillo ANA blood work came back positive..1:84 doctors says I don't apprear to have Lupus. should further testing be done?..I have many symptoms chronic pain legs, arms back kidney area (kidney function is good had a test done) MRI of brain came back normal, fatigue, feel sick all day long, I do have IC the lining of my bladder is gone (about an inch) could that cause ANA to be elevated? Thank You

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@debbie Plaquenil can certainly cause skin changes including discoloration. However, it's important to rule out lupus rash, like discoid, causing similar changes.

    Lisa Maria Sydor Why is it important when on plaquenil not to stay in the sun

    Jesica Gronau I continue to have a very high positive ANA but all other labs come back normal. I also have some major symptoms(to many to list), could it be lupus? I've been to MANY different Dr's and not one can figure me out!! Help please!! I'm ready to get in contact with Dr. Oz or The Dr.'s TV show, I don't know what else to do!!

    Lara Rebecca Schilling My symptoms started popping up when I was 14 (I'm almost 24 now) and I was confirmed to have Lupus this year (9 solid years of positive, high titre ANA), but as a child, I constantly got sick with the flu, got rashes that were deemed "heat rash" and severe allergic reactions to insect bites, however, I didn't become sensitive to the sun until I was in my late teens. My mum doesn't remember much, but did mention I had a childhood murmur, which I still have or have again. Could I have had SLE since childhood without knowing it?

    Shemone LovinLife Williams Whats a skin care product that helps fade away dark spots left from lesions & rashes?

    Maria Garcia Plaquinil put me in the hospital would like to know what else can replace it what other medicines can help my arthritis?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@suzy Lupus can flare during pregnancy and may be related to increased levels of hormones. One general point: It is better to have inactive disease for at least six months before contemplating pregnancy and Plaquenil (HCQ) can reduce the rate of flares.

    Kymonique Hill What can i do to lose some of this weight caused by the steroids because i really dnt have any energy. And i feel at a lost

    Patricia Sayles I don't seem to get the butterfly rash. My face does get really red but I don't seem to get like the butterfly rash. I get really bad rashes on my right hand for some reason and it has been starting going up my arm. Two different doctors told me it looked like patiki, my primary care doctor and another dr. I saw at urgent care. They told me it wasn't really urgent and were very rude to me. I went because I just wanted them to make a note of it for my rheumetologist basically.

    Renee Wallace Dr. Chowdhary do you have an email address where you can be contacted? Both my mom and I have Lupus SLE and she also has Sjogren's as well as Transverse Myelitis. It's complicated and I figured it would be easier to explain in an email than tying up this thread. Thanks in advance!

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Toni Lupus and medications like cyclophosphamide can cause premature menopause.

    Anne Flynn Beddingfield what can stop itching !

    Patricia Sayles April Haworth I can totally relate to you.

    Teresa Pedretti Is it possible to have sle and never have a positive Ana?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Kiesha Sorry to hear about your mom's discoid lesions. Sometimes steroids can be injected in the scars. A good dermatologist would be helpful.

    Linda Anne Dunayer Can Lupus affect the eyes?

    Kymonique Hill And what are some foods i can get to help with the outbreaks?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Jackie There are several medications besides HCQ that help lupus. Example: methotrexate, azathioprine, mycophenolate and mofetil. Pls discuss these options with your rheumatologist.

    Chastity Sigmon Nicholson I was diagnosed with Lupus 12 yrs ago by my family dr..when I went to a rheumatologist they said it was MCTD. Sometimes I have a positive ANA others its Negative. What causes this? I feel so drained all the time and hurt all the time and my Dr acts like its no big deal ...should I look for another Rheumatologist?

    Tiffany Peterson I would like to ask Dr. Vai Chowdhary this, "What does it mean when a patient has a positive ANA along with all of the diagnostic criteria symptom markers for months and then one month their blood work tests negative for ANA. When a patient's ANA switches between negative and positive is this protocol for rheumatologists to remove the lupus diagnosis and declare they do not have lupus because their blood work is negative? I ask because this question is prevalent amongst many patients and we need an answer!

    Teresa Pedretti Are there any new medications on the rise for this horrible disease ?

    Kat Thompson Is it possible too have all the symptoms and signs of lupus but the blood tests come back negative??

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Melissa Gastroparesis can be seen in lupus. Some people have superimposed sclerocderma in which this is more common. A gastroenterologist can diagnose and help with the management.

    Karen Martucci Is it safe to follow a high protein diet with Lupus?

    Debbie S Torrey how high can your ana get from lupus ? i have sle my last blood test was 1:1280 and what would happen if you dont take drugs for lupus ?? not that i will stop but just asking i have talked with some people that say they will not take them >

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Heather Long-term steroids can cause osteoporosis, increased risk of diabetes, cataracts. However, you're taking a very low dose. It is best to discuss this with your rheumatologist.

    Jandee Montanez Sometimes I feel like my body is bruised all over but there aren't any bruises visible. It hurts to barely touch me. Is this related to my lupus?

    Ciise Escobar My daughter was diagnos with skin lupus ...Does she has a chance to develop Lupus the actual Lupus??

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Andrea. Plaquenil can cause gum hyperpigmentation.

    Skochii Bennett-Polchlopek How can I accurately choose a sunscreen to protect me? What should I be looking for?

    Rebecca Casper What I want to know, is there a such thing as having lupus but all blood work being normal. I have shown all of the symptoms for 2 years and have had 3 different dr's say that its a strong chance that it's lupus. But went to a RA and they said since the bloodwork was negative, I don't have it.

    Tawne Nelson Whats the relationship between lupus and pericarditis?? Does this mean the heart has been damaged by lupus??

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Donna Maintaining a good body weight is very important for lupus. It will help with the joint pains and is very beneficial for reducing heart disease risk. There is also some thought that the excess fat tissue increases inflammation. On this one, I am with your friends.

    Elana Wright Gillispie I seem to basically live in a flare up. I am on enough meds to start my own pharmacy. I seem to have no relief from the symptoms but can't get a rheumatologist to take me seriously. Today I have made it from my
    Bed to the couch. I have a 5 yr old and 2 yr old that are both boys and I am LPN. I can't go outside without breaking out in a rash all over which are the discoid lesions I guess. It took me 5 yrs to get diagnosed during which time I had my youngest. Is there anything that I can do to lessen the symptoms???

    Brittney Bailey ‎"I have a question I have had lupus now for a number of years. This really bothers me why is it that everyone gets so depressed? Is it really a chemical thing or is it we just can not do everything like we used to. It is like the first thing my doctors says to me are you depressed, because she can give me something for that. I find it to easy to get pills than real help why is everyone depressed. Could it be lack of support, more pain or finding out there is one less job you can do?"-Wendy De Lena

    Ashley 'bLu' Barros Dr.Chowdhary i was wondering if you could shed some light on what neuropsychiatric lupus (NPSLE) is? How is works exactly. Maybe how its treated? What are symptoms of it? A fellow paitient/member of my support group? I wasnt sure what to tell her since i didnt know much, seems like info is lacking on it. . . THANK YOU SO MUCH DR!!!!!

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Carla We occasionally see the ANA turn negative after lupus is in remission on medication. It would be unusual for it to turn negative without any treatment. There are several reasons the ANA test can be transiently positive. Pls check with your doctor if that is a possibility for you.

    Debra Belisle-putnam no post in last 11 minutes so was that it.

    Nicole Weidemann Dr. Chowdhary: What are the best contraceptive options for someone with SLE on Plaquenil and Methotrexate? I have heard that the excess estrogen in birth control pills can cause problems with SLE.

    Teresa Pedretti I have been diagnosed since 1994, and recently had serious visual disturbances- how commen is eye problems in sle

    Cathy Coyle Kromer Hello Dr. Chowdhary. I've had MCTD for about 4 years now. I've been on many meds, plaq, celebrex, blood pressure meds, muscle relaxers, ext. I have never felt worse than I do now. Much more fatigue, cognitive issues, pain and weekness of muscles. The works. What more can I do? I rest When I can. I try to get excecize. I eat well. I feel like garbage! Work is very stressful. I have 3 young kids. My rheumatoligist is great. Ugh. Its so frustrating!

    Laura Morrison Are psoriasis and mild cerebral palsy somehow connected with lupus, as well as genes?

    Karon L. Beasley Symptoms w/ sle Last visit - Hand swollen like a club, horribe joint pain, nerve pain,malar, numbness all over, swelling, fatigue, cognitive impairment worse. Steriod 120 - don't think it helped. Take 10 MG of prednisone, plaquenil - Dr. wanting methotrexate injections. Said labs would not matter, she had seen enough. Methotrexate is dangerous too - will it help with more than pain? Fatigue? Taken before with heart, lung brain involvement.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Tawne Lupus causes inflammation of lung and heart lining and can cause pericarditis and pleural effusions. HCQ is a good therapy for that. Apart from this, lupus also has an increased risk for heart disease. It is important to talk to your rheumatologist about this and work on some risk factors that you can modify.

    Deborah Rodgers I have a high ANA and high ANTI-RO LEVEL. also have APS. and joint and muscle pain headaches dizziness double vision vertigo....yet i cant get a diagnosis...please help

    Brenda Swinson Hi, I have lupus but am told I am in remission. I am totally exhausted. My last blood work a couple of weeks ago showed high sed rate but the rest is normal. I was told that my exhaustion was due to stress. Could it still be lupus related?

    Heather Riley I have been on steroids for over a year and a half with no breaks, plaquenil, and now methotrexate since february. How long should I try the methotrexate before asking my doctor to change the medication. So far there have been no improvements.

    Laura Morrison Sorry about the cp question, but it's been on my mind.

    Lupus Foundation of America ‎Debra Belisle-putnam: please refresh your browser so you can see the full thread.

    Courtney Clough I keep trying to lose the steroid weight and when I get down about 20 pounds I end up in a Lupus and IBS-D flare. Is the any research about which diet plan is best for people with Lupus?

    Jackie Hochstein can u take metformin while on plaqulin ..I use to be on it before dignosed with lupus 3 months ago but being on prednsone i've gained 18 pounds and metformin always kept me at the same weight..

    Cynone Miller what natural remedies should I avoid with lupus

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Tristin I'm sorry to hear about your diagnosis of MS and lupus. MS can coexist with lupus and sometimes has been called lupoid sclerosis. Many autoimmune diseases can occur together but pls check with your doctor whether you only have a positive lupus test without any clinical features.

    Tiffany Peterson I'm curious as to why this chat isn't happening on a more user friendly outlet like twitter. It's difficult to follow a health chat on this social media platform. Especially since Dr. Chowdhary is a Mayo Clinic physician, and they are great with integrating healthcare social media with so many health institutions.

    Brittney Bailey Not everyone has a twitter. I don't even know how to use I think this is working just fine. I just keep refreshing the page.

    Robin R Smith-Mcdonald I have had blood work 2 times a yr. Come back Ana low but I have joint pain. But it comes and gose.also at time I have pain all over.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Brittney It does appear that you have symptoms of multiple rheumatic diseases and have a positive test for MCTD. It is not uncommon for MCTD patients to evolve into scleroderma, however, treatment is based on the active disease manifestation and not the name that we give to the disesae.

    Cindy Shay Jones Dr. Chowdhary, My rheumatologist indicated that many times as a woman ages with lupus her SLE symptoms could lessen? My husband heard this and now believes that one day I will be symptom free. (I am 52.) What is your opinion on this?

    Linda Havens Bristow I am on methotrexate and plaquenil and have ILD as a result of lupus. Recently was discovered to have enlarged liver and spleen. Could this be a result of the autoimmune disease process? I have had a 23 lb wt loss in the last 3 mos with trying. Thx

    Deb Dragoo LINDA - having probs w/eyes is what got me my diag. of lupus - after 2 "lupus tests" came back neg. I tested pos. for APS and Sjogrens - I had black blocks and star bursts and double vision.

    Stacey Wright-Parks How does Lupus affect your lungs? I now have chronic bronchitis never smoked..

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Julia I am sorry to hear that you could not find a suitable drug for lupus. Pls check with your rheumatologist. If the disease is active, it is better to treat it early.

    Karon L. Beasley Dr. Chowdhary, I am 44 - Why would labs not matter? Would this start early menopause? Hate to add hormones to the mix! HELP

    Tracey Bell can u be born with lupus because I was diagnosed at 8 years old after 2 years of running to doctors??? I was sick since birth...

    Jamie Binkley Eastham I have been diagnosed with SLE for about 3 years! Have had multiple organ involvement, seizures, intestinal problems, skin problems, extreme mouth sores, vision problems, respiratory name it! I have been on high dose steroids and immunosuppressant drugs for the past 3 years! I am currently having less problems then before but still considered to be in an "Active stage"! How long do these active times last and are there any ways to minimize them! I'm wore out! And seriously wanting to take less medications!

    Maria Kinniburgh I was diagnosed in 2009 with lupus sle i've had a second opinion and it was confirmed that i was lupus positive and now i have to go for a kidney biopsy i do suffer from kidney stones but im afraid i dont know what to do

    Bea Brugge I would like to know why my Rheumatologist said I have a +ANA but he doesn't know why. My family dr told me Lupus and the Rheumatologist said it's not after further testing. Yet he keeps me on Nambumetone. I don't know what's wrong and can't get a straight answer. He said there are alot of people with a positive ANA. There are days I am in so much pain that I just can't get out of the house. Any information is greatly appreciated.

    Jackie Hochstein my ana test was 1:1280 and now 1:640 does that mean the meds r working

    Terry Klemp I am sick and tired of being sick and tired! The pain is excrutiating! It is very difficult to get on disability in Wisconsin. Any ideas??

    Tahirah Cybernurse Lewis I would like to know if the depo provera is a good birth control method for someone with SLE?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@marideli Fatigue is an important problem associated with lupus and can significantly impact quality of life. Recommendations would include No. 1: good control of disease activity. 2: Plaquenil therapy. 3: Aerobic and strengthening exercises. 4: Ruling out secondary causes like anemia, hypothyroidism and depression.

    Virginia Gamboa Lugo Dr. I was diagnosed with Lupus 2 years ago I have been treated with Plaquenil and Naproxen. Overal I feel good , however i have gain weight and have sometimes headaches, is That secondary effects from The meds? Also do you recomend any special diatery?

    Cindy Shay Jones To Karon B.......I also developed what I now believe to be the early signs of lupus and went into spontaneous early menopause at 44.

    Wendy De Lena I have a question I have had lupus now for a number of years. This really bothers me why is it that everyone gets so depressed? Is it really a chemical thing or is it we just can not do everything like we used to. It is like the first thing my doctors says to me are you depressed, because she can give me something for that. I find it to easy to get pills than real help why is everyone depressed. Could it be lack of support, more pain or finding out there is one less job you can do?

    Vicki Waddell Why is it so hard to get a dr to diagnos lupus and not wright you off? Also why would the lab tests go from positive to negative and back again. Can systematic lupus can almost kidney failure only to have it go away again?

    Annie Pearson Nowlin where is the chat?

    Lupus Foundation of America ‎Annie Pearson Nowlin: The chat is occuring right now on this thread. Feel free to ask you question now!

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Allison Pls make sure that your ANA has been tested by a method called Hep 2. A skin biopsy may sometimes help in making a diagnosis of skin lupus. Plaquenil may help both the manifestations of skin and joint lupus.

    Donna Fedor Twichell I can't find it either. How do we get on?

    Marla Winters What are your suggestions when dealing with the cycle of pain and exercise? I know I need to exercise but yet the pain and fatigue seem to make it next to impossible. I have tried the 5 minutes every 2 hours of walking but then I am hurting just from that.

    Lillian Morin Leno I have Lupus and Fibro, I take Plaquenil. I have puffy eyes dark circles and can get rid of them. I sleep alot feel tired all the time, bloodwork I'm told is good. No flare ups right now. What can I do???

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@cynone There is no specific lupus diet. A good well-balanced diet low in saturated fat and rich in fruits and vegetables is prudent. Alfalfa sprouts have sometimes caused lupus in animals and it may be best to avoid them. Omega 3 fatty acids are felt to be anti-inflammatory but studies have not shown that. Still, it is reasonable to include fish or Omega 3 acid supplements in your diet.

    Cynone Miller I have been diagnosed with Lupus and Sjogren's Syndrome can you explain how the two link together?

    Patty Maher I have SLE with a significant cutaneous manifestation. I'm on Plaquenil now (dx in January). Is there anything that can be done to lessen the scarring that happens with the sores?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Patricia If your arthritis is still very active, pls consult with your doctor to see if you need medicines that are stronger than Plaquenil.

    Jaimie Johnson Hi dr.. I have been seen by many docs, many head scans, many eye exams. I'm very dizzy a lot and have the tendency to pass out. ESP when its a bad flair day and they take 1 vial of blood. I also get extremely dizzy every time I cry. Any suggestions?

    Denise Vazquez Hi I have lupus and I have been taking my plaquenils and my doctor said my titer is very high why?

    Leida Delgadillo Olvera The red blotches on my skin, do they occur because of the exposure to the sun or is it from stress?

    Rachel Feltner Hensley I am thirty-three and I am finding that I just continue to gain weight. I feel fatigued all of the time. I just keep getting more depressed with the more weight I gain. I am single and I have no energy. It hurts so bad when I walk or do other exercises. I just want to lose weight, and stop hurting all of the time. I want to be....normal, and active again. I want the pain to stop because I am constantly miserable. I just want to feel good. I have very few good days lately. What can I do to change these things? How can I work through the pain?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Jennifer There are no trials that have shown efficacy of complementary medicine treatments over conventional medical therapy. However, they are worth exploring for management of fatigue, fibromyalgia and pain. It is also important to make sure that the supplements you take are pure as many of them have contamination with heavy metals.

    Karon L. Beasley Symptoms w/ sle Last visit - Hand swollen like a club, horribe joint pain, nerve pain,malar, numbness all over, swelling, fatigue, cognitive impairment worse. Steriod 120 - don't think it helped. Take 10 MG of prednisone, plaquenil - Dr. wanting methotrexate injections. Said labs would not matter, she had seen enough. Methotrexate is dangerous too - will it help with more than pain? Fatigue? Taken before with heart, lung brain involvement.

    Linda Stevens Carney I had blood work done and found out I have Lupus and also have the gene in my DNA..should I have my adult daughter tested?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Karon If your fatigue is coming from active disease, treatment is worth trying.

    Karen Swain Reed ‎@ Deb Dragoo I got uveitis and the eye Dr said, you have lupus. He asked me questions then send me to a rhuemy immediately.

    Adis Farrington My diagnose is Mixed Connective Tissue Disease, which to me means " we really don't know what she has". My common symptoms are mild joint pain, sun sensitivity, fatige on regular days; and severe Joint pain, headache and pericarditis when a flare up (I'm in Coumadin and Plaquenil - Prednisone when a flare). How common is it that I also have "Sticky blood"? and an "enlarged Pituitary"? (no symptoms so far).

    Karon L. Beasley Why would labs not matter?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Shemone Hydroquinone creams may help lighten the pigmentation. Pls discuss anticipated benefits and side effects with your dermatologist.

    Patricia Sayles Lillian. I have fibro and I was put on plaquenil recently. I was taking predizone and it helped a lot but the plaquenil doesn't seem to be helping. I am tired most of the time. I am a mess. I can't work or anything. I don't even like getting up in the morning. I feel like I can sleep for hours and hours and the gloomy rainy weather makes me feel worse. I hate this time of the year. It makes me feel sicker.

    Jamie Glisson Is there a link between Lupus/Auto Immune Diseases and Gall bladder disease or Gall Bladder flare-ups? I seem to experience them every few weeks and it is extremely painful and really nothing I can do about it but get through it . . . any recommendations?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Dotty I am sorry to hear that your lupus was diagnosed at a younger age. Juvenile lupus is felt to be more severe, however, there are various effective therapeutic options and if your disease is under control there is no reason you cannot get pregnant or have a full life.

    Irma Antoinette Cuevas Dr. Chowdhary,
    I was diagnosed at 14 years old. I've been doing pretty good, but for a week now I have been on Constant pain and I've been taking lots of Advil to help me get I work and do daily things. I can't keep taking Advil for pain for fear I'll mess with my blood. What can I do till I see the doctor? What will help this pain?

    Missy Coones I have a question to your answer about the supplements, how do you know if they are pure or not?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Kimberly Lupus is not classically hereditary but several genes especially of the immune system do predispose you to developing lupus. Memory complaints are very common in lupus patients. Please see your doctor to rule out secondary causes.

    Jonathan Kingsley Dr. Vai, my wife has SLE, and we are planning a trip to South America (Peruvian Amazon around Iquitos). Are there any concerns for travel vaccinations or things of that nature that would affect her differently than the normal "leaving the country" vaccs and what preparations should we make (besides insect repellents and face mask breathers) regarding the "malaria" issues? Thank you for your time on here today!

    Deb Dragoo ‎@ Karen Swain Reed - my eye dr said I was having visual migraines. took another 3 mos. to get my PC to send me to a neuro. then they sent me to a rheum. - and of course exercising and dieting would cure everything according the PC I no longer go to.

    Tahirah Cybernurse Lewis What effect does tomatoes have on SLE pts?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Stacy I would closely work with your doctor. Not every patient has all the symptoms. Plaquenil can be sometimes hard to tolerate and you have been on it for a very short time to know if it has/will benefit you.

    Friends Against Lupus That's a great question @Missy Coones, we'd like to know the answer to how we can tell vitamins/supplements are pure or accurate since many of them are not FDA approved.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Annet Nausea is a symptom that can come from many causes, but nausea without any other symptoms would be a very rare sign of flare. Please check with your doctor whether it represents a flare for you.

    Matthew Lindsey McAlpine I get horrible mouth sores with my flares. Anything out there that helps? They make me completely miserable and I normally have about 6-7 at a time.

    Morchelle Oliver I have lupus. Should I have my children tested?

    Cathy Robison Does a neg ANA mean I don't have lupus?

    Jennifer Petrarca- Garcia Thank for your response, yes all my suppliments come from naturalpathic docs and are pure, know in the future I hope to plan a pregnancy but when you advise to be an inactive state can your test/blood work still show signs of the deisease but if it is not a big concern with docs can you go ahead and plan a pregnacy

    Lecia Naler Lattimer i've had lipus for about 14 yrs. i have alot of pain in my lower back and down my legs. Here lately from my knees down to my toes hurt really bad. Stinging, aching..burning feeling, tingling,, you name it. I just want the pain to go away. I've tried about every thing. Any suggestions?

    Karianne Parkinson my neurologist is Arif Chowdhary in Ut. relation? diagnosis in 2006 DLE through skin biopsy a year later started treatment for SCLE and now am being treated for SLE in feb I had a flare that hit my brain. my team of drs have . been great but to this day has not been able to answer the one question.. how does it go from skin to my brain so fast?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Tiffany That's a good question. The ANA levels may fluctuate during therapy and can sometimes turn negative on therapy. If the test was positive at the time of diagnosis and patients had all the symptoms, I would treat that person as lupus.

    Chandra Mason I have lupus nephritis and For the first time in years I've had a positive ana and an elevated inflamatory test.. we know that my lupus is active but is not affecting my kidneys at this time but we can't figure out what its doing except that its making me feel awful and giving me nasty rashes oh and was recently diagnosed with pcos but they don't think its linked.. any ideas for me and the doc?

    Clarita Tandazo Luna Doctor is it bad for a person with lupus to not sleep at least 7 hours ,also if the person is taking medicines can the person have a drink socially?

    Jacqueline Lue Not 'told" I had SLE, I became pregnant and took prendisone from 3mo pregnant till my son was 3mo old. I had joint pains for weeks and had an awful stomach pain for 2 days. Had simultanious vomiting & diarrhea for 5 days after then. Hospital with held all food & liquid andto this day I don't know what was wrong. Could lupus cause this? I was 130lbs and now I'm 109 (5ft7in 30yr old) I am on Plaquenil & still suffer from joint pain. Should we still feel joint pain while on Plaquenil? What may help?

    Jillian Gosselin Hi Dr Chowdhary, my husband was diagnosed 18 years ago with SLE. Recently, he has been very healthy. As a result of his Lupus, he has kidney disease. We now have a 2 year old daughter who was just on the hospital for a severe bacterial infection. Now the drs are worried about her kidney function bc her creatnine is so low. Could this be a trait that he passed to our daughter? Also, what is an appropriate age to test for Lupus? Thank you for your input!

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Tiffany It is also important to know the test that was done to check for ANA. A negative Hep 2 by indirect immunofluourescence would be very unusual for active lupus.

    Juanita Clara Lopez Shutts I'm 22. I have 2 children I was diagnosed after my second pregnancy almost 2 years ago. I recently had a c t scan done. The doctor said I show signs of lupus nephritis. That my kidneys arnt functioning as well as they should.Does this mean I will need a new kidney for sure? If so how long does it usually take for a patient need a new kidney? What can I do to help?

    Allison Casamer Kolesky Do you have patients that are under 5? What is their projected future from the patients that young that you see? My son is 4, has the malar rash, +ANA and DNase, severe sun outbreaks, swollen knees,often letharigic, runs intermittent fevers, all worse of course with the heat.. and just got over a case of acute GN from strep/ impetigo. Now we are in a wait frame to get into University of Michigan to see the ped rheumatologist and in the meantime don't know what to do. We keep having to just use steroid creams and anti inflamatorys. All various medical doctors (ped, derm,allergy, and ID drs) suspect lupus, but once we get to u of m, what do you think would be his next plan to take? Waiting months to see this specialist and feeling like there is something else we should be doing and NOT waiting this long!! Any insight would be helpful!

    Michelle Lewis I like facebook as a format so that people can go back & read the questions and comments if they want or if they can't read them as the discussion takes place. Much easier to do on facebook than twitter imho.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Amanda Tough situation. Sometimes the way the ds DNA test is done may make it positive without having any signs of lupus. I would follow closely with your doctor to make sure the ANA does not turn positive subsequently.

    Karon L. Beasley What is considered active disease? When on immune suppressing drugs it changes labs right? So do you go by the labs and the increase of the classic SLE symptoms.

    Jacqueline Lue Have SLE and taking Plaquenil. I notice itchy areas & it just turns red with no bumps. I don't go in thesun either. Lupus related?

    Jesica Gronau ‎@Rachel Feltner-Hensley, I am the exact same way!! Hard to make it all day & I'm so tired of no answers that the depression & getting my hopes up with each failed appointment over the past 2yrs, I'm gonna go crazy!!

    Mary Cuthbertson How can i best deal with the sun sensitivity? I use sun screens and try to stay out of the sun. I"m on plaquenil. I will get red spots over my arms and body.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Lisa It is not unusual for us to see family members with different diagnoses like RA in one and lupus or Sjogren in another. Many times the treatment would be the same for mild disease (Plaquenil). Typically RA causes changes on the X-ray whereas the majority of lupus cases do not destroy bone.

    Melissa LePior What benifits can Feverfew provide if any? Thanks~

    Shannon Geary Tate Hi Ive tested positive on all blood work but my rheum did another test where it was negitive. He has given me a diagnoses of MCTD. I hurt all the time, my energy level is beyond tolerable. That is the worst of it. Could he be wrong and I actually have Lupus or could this turn into Lupus?

    Christa Goff Is it normal for the ANA to become "equivocal" after 2 yrs on Plaquenil?

    Sowjanya Veeramraju Hi Dr. Chowdhary, what are the symptoms for kidney involvement?

    Kimberly Hendrix Tank I have been having s/s of lupus off and on for many years. My primary dx me with lupus because of + ANA and + lupus anticogulant test. My new reumotoligist has been waiting about Lupud Dx. No rx to treat lupus. I am really worried about my kidneys and I am ruled by pain. How long does Labs need to be positive to start treatment?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Kathy Please get an ultrasound of the legs to rule out any blood clots.

    Ron N Lisa Kelly Been in flare for 1year come June. On cellcept for last four months, every other visit kidneys passing protien. Joint hands,knees,ankles have knots the size of small eggs. Other joints hurt also. Fatigue is unreal. Q: how long should this last and stol be considered "ok". Also on predisone for past month.

    Amber Kimberlin i was diagnosed with lupus in 2008 it has gotten much worse and i am having a really hard time getting proper treatment and care form the drs in medford oregon, i get treated like a druggy when alls i want them to do is help me control it. i am also pregnant. i dont even know where to go now. i cant even keep up with my 2 year old because i hurt so much. I hurt my tail bone some how and the dr told me i could only take tylenol for the pain and it will go away. it has not gone away and has only got worse what can you recomend i do. PLEASE HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Kristyna Taylor Burczyk I have SLE, Fibromylagia and dermatomyositis. I've been trying like crazy to lose weight but to no avail. I've been told that gastric bypass is not an option for me, due to the Lupus. Is this accurate information or just my doctor's personal opinion?

    Sholatha George Hunter is there a connection betweeen Lupus and gastroparesis?

    Jamie Glisson Someone above asked about being able to feel joint pain while on plaquinil . . . I am in pain ALL THE TIME but at varying levels. I once took myself off of plaquinil because I thought it wasn't working and with in a week and a half I was crippled and barely able to walk. Obviously it is doing something for me but I am still in daily pain. Does having Lupus/RA mean that we will always feel this way or do I need to just seek other/more treatment options? I just constantly feel like I am 'waiting' for something to fix me.

    Cindy Shay Jones Dr. Chowdhary, My rheumatologist indicated that many times as a woman ages with lupus her SLE symptoms could lessen? My husband heard this and now believes that one day I will be symptom free. (I am 52.) What is your opinion on this?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Dianne Please see a neurologist to make sure there is no involvement of your brain from lupus. There are several tests that can be used to detect this.

    Jasmine Courtney Faith Jackson are there any non narcodict pain meds that can be taken and is there any other drug other than benysta?

    Dionne Sparrow Can bronchitis and upper respiratory infections be associated with lupus...prior to my diagnosis I never had these every couple of months I have either bronchitis, costochondritis or URI...My pcp has even prescribed an inhaler...what if any is the connection?

    Irene Lupus Hughes Hello from the uk, just to say how great it has been reading people's responses! I have had Lupus 10 years now! I have a 14 year old daughter who has it too!

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Lupita There are several causes of a positive ANA test and some healthy people and healthy female relatives of patients with lupus can have a positive test without having the disease. Please work with your doctor to make sure you do not have the disease.

    Cindy Shay Jones Jamie, my rheumotologist placed me on Prednisone and when that with the Placquenil still didn't take care of my pain and fatigue he also added Methotrexate. I am finally feeling like a real person again.

    Mary Cuthbertson What is the best way to deal with a lack of moisture in the throat. I am constantly drinking water, sucking lozensers and clearning my throat.. will this get better? Is this part of the flaring? Thank you..

    Juanita Clara Lopez Shutts I posted a question earlier can someone help please?

    Ileana Gonzalez Mazzurco I was diagnosed 13 years ago have had 2 TIAs seizure and tremendous joint pain. Presently I am not taking
    Any medication bc of insurance reasons is there something I can take over the counter (not Aleve) that will help with pain

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@ Skochii A good resource for finding sunscreen and learning about sun protection is .

    Sun Protection and Sunscreens

    Friends Against Lupus Hello Dr. Vai Chowdhary, I have two questions. One being how can we protect ourselves from UV lights besides the sun. Does sunblock also protect us from strong fluorescent lights as it does the sun? My 2nd question is what can we personally do in our daily lives to lower our chances of severe fatigue. I know some MDs recommend exercise, but what type of exercises are safe for us to engage? & are there any dietary or nutritional changes that also help decrease fatigue & build energy?

    Ron N Lisa Kelly Ps 55 yr old female diagnosed first time 20 yrs ago. Then a few months after that told no it was fibrous. For 12 yrs no meds. Then it got bad again and new dr tested me and said I probably had SLE all that time.

    Mary Cuthbertson Great questions!

    Irene Lupus Hughes Me and my daughter use a cream called Sun sense which was prescribed off our rheumatologist!

    Amber Kimberlin I have also had positive tests and negative tests, when it comes up negative dose that mean the lupus is in ramishon

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@ Jillian. Sorry to hear about our daughter's kidney problems. It is less likely that your husband directly passed it to you daughter. As ANA can sometimes be found in relatives of patients with lupus, I wouldn't necessarily test their ANA. However if the kidney disease appears to be like lupus (and nephrologists can tell, especially on a kidney biospy) then by all means go ahead.

    Lupus Foundation of America Hi all! We are no longer accepting questions. Please stay on as Dr. Vai Chowdhary continues to respond to a few more of the already submitted questions.

    LeeAnne Wownelson Ya know i have all the same problems tjat jaqueline is going through and im getting no where with my doctor and i dont know what to do? Does depression come along with lupus too?

    Tiffany Peterson Thank you for answering my question about ANA blood results Dr. Chowdhary! I will be sharing it with the other members in the online lupus patient communities.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Jonathan Please see a travel infectious disease specialist. There are specific vaccinations and medications that will depend on the region of travel and the type of medicines your wife is taking.

    LeeAnne Wownelson And yes about fatigue ive tried the exersise but wheb ive done that because i also have fybromyalgia i end up getting worse ive even tried working out on just the wii and end up hurting the too....what can i do?

    Karen Swain Reed Thank you Dr and lupus foundation for doing this!! I have learned more now than in 16 years of having lupus! Thank you so much:-)

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Karon Interesting but sometimes tough question. An active disease is defined by a combination of clinical symptoms and labs. However, it may be hard to distinguish infection and drug side effects from a lupus flare.

    Clint Wilson Does Lupus affect men differently and how or what can they do differently to treat it?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Juanita I am assuming the diagnosis of lupus nephritis was made on clinical examination, urinary and blood tests and possibly a kidney biopsy. CT scan alone would not show changes of lupus nephritis. There are several good options for treatment of lupus nephritis and you may never need kidney transplant. It will also be important to keep normal blood pressure and cholesterol and medications that your doctor can prescibe to preserve the kidney function.

    Tiffany Manning what is a reasonable expectation for to be in "remission" I was dxed three yrs ago and Ive never felt "good" even when I wouldn

    Tiffany Manning call it a flar

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Jennifer If the disease is inactive for at least six months, you can certainly contemplate pregnancy. It is good to see your rheumatologist and a high-risk OB for good management of pregnancy. Please talk to your rheumatologist about checking you for antiphospholipid antibodies and anti-Ro and anti-La. Plaquenil can prevent flares in pregnancy.

    Cathy Pulido Hello Dr. I have been diagnoised w lupus approx 8 yrs ago (sle) and I am very moody! Well it takes a lot to get me angry and once I'm there it takes a lot to get me down! Why do most lupus pts experience some form of bi - polor?

    Maribel Gonzalez I have been diagnosed with Lupus Nephritis, and I am getting treatment, I am getting Chemotherapy (Cytoxan) and Cellcept with other meds for hypertension. My question is, is Lupus Nephritis reversable? Will my kidney's get back to functioning how they were with this treatment? And I also have bad edema on feet and legs. It won't go away unless I elevate my legs and I am on a 40mg Lasix, but it doesn't work.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@ Ciise Studies from Mayo have shown that the risk of developing SLE in people with skin lupus only is five percent at five years and 10 percent at 10 years.

    LeeAnne Wownelson Im just having a very hard time getting my doctor to listen to me about my illness at all she basically just says when its the end its the end and heres some medicine to help with the pain but its no longer helping....

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Stacey Lupus can affect the lungs in many ways. It can cause pneumonia, bleeding in the lungs, problems with the diaphragm and airways (bronchitis) as well as pleural effusion.

    LeeAnne Wownelson Is there anybody gonna answer my questions?

    Lupita Sedillo Thank you Dr.Vai Chowdhary. I will follow up with doctor. Have a good day God Bless!

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@LeeAnne I'm sorry to hear about your pain. It maybe worthwhile exploring complementary therapies like acupuncture and biofeedback and consulting with a pain specialist to see if medications or procedures would help your pain.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Clint Lupus can certainly affect men. Kidney involvement may be more common. The disease would not be treated differently.

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Tiffany The challenge of lupus is that symptoms of fatigue, pain, etc. may still persist in spite of good treatment for lupus. Please discuss with your doctor whether mind/body techniques, exercise, stress management, etc. would help you.

    Christa Goff Any thoughts on the ANA equivocal?

    Christa Goff original was 1500

    Kiesha Smartt ‎@Vai Chowdhary, THANK you. She has limited insurance so it's difficult for her to go to the dermatologist because she has to go to Knoxville (We live in Chattanooga) to see him. I am going to call her insurance company to see if we can find someone closer. Any idea what we could do for the hair loss?

    Vai Chowdhary ‎@Cathy I share your frustration. It is difficult for patients to get a diagnosis early, and quality of life is significantly affected by several manifestations like fatigue, pain (brain fog). It's often hard for others to appreciate the difficulties that you may be going through as many people look "too well to be so sick."

    Leida Delgadillo Olvera Are heel spurs related to having Lupus?

    Brittney Bailey I have found this so helpful :) I read article upon article of lupus information online and speak with others with lupus all the time but have never had such good information given in one sitting. I have a really good rheumatologist but we don't really get along so I often don't ask her some of these things when I go to appoitments. Thanks for all the helpful information!

    Deb Dragoo I've read about a lot of people's pain. And, honestly a lot of you sound like you have it way worse than I do....but I recommend massage therapy. Not hot rocks and frufru! That hour's gonna suck, but afterwards it great! Just a thought, because it's almost impossible to get it covered under insurance and can be expensive. I'd go every other day but I can only afford every other week.

    Lupus Foundation of America Thank you all for participating and a big thank you to Dr. Vai Chowdhary and Mayo Clinic for taking time out of your busy schedule to chat with us. For more information about lupus, please visit the Learn about Lupus section of our website at In addition, we have health educators available to answer any questions you may have. You can reach them at 800-558-0121 or online at

    Vai Chowdhary Thank you for the wonderful chat. Some closing advice: See your rheumatologist frequently, ask questions, don't be afraid to seek help, and remember you're not alone. Good luck with this tough disease. For more information, please see .

    Lupus -

    Lupus — Comprehensive overview covers symptoms and treatment of lupus, including systemic lupus erythematosus.

    32 minutes ago · LikeUnlike · 3

    Lisa Angel Please tell me if there is some way to not get overheated during this time of year. I can barely stay outside right now and it takes me all day to recover when I get overheated. Is this from the Lupus itself or the meds?

    Lisa Angel ‎:( I asked my question twice but no answer.

    Rebecca Casper I submitted my question towards the beginning and out was never answered :(

    Lupus Foundation of America ‎Lisa Angel: Unfortunately, Dr. Chowdhary did not have time to answer all the questions, even though she would have loved to. Please submit your question to our health educators, who can be reached at 800-558-0121 or online at

    Lupus Foundation of America We noticed several questions about sun (photosensitivity) through out the chat. Two-thirds of people with lupus have increased sensitivity to ultraviolet rays, either from sunlight or from artificial inside light, such as fluorescent light, or both. Whether or not you are photosensitive you should limit your exposure to ultraviolet rays, especially outdoors, as excessive exposure to the sun can cause lupus to flare. You can read more about sensitivity to light on the LFA website at .