Lady Gaga may have lupus

Posted by MattaD on 07/13/2010

Despite all the times that it wasn't lupus on House MD, sometimes it really is. Lady Gaga recently disclosed that she has been tested for the disease, and she expects to be diagnosed with it. It has occurred in her family, and it is thought to be genetic. It is a chronic disease, and though lupus is far from the worst one to get, treatment is critical. Lupus is a potentially deadly autoimmune disease.

Article Source: Lady Gaga tests borderline optimistic for lupus

It could be bad for it to be lupus

Lupus is significant, though not the death sentence Lou Gehrig's Disease is. It is a chronic condition that has to be managed, and there is a modest chance of it being fatal. Lupus has a five-year survival rate of about 95 percent and a 20-year survival rate of just less than 80 percent. Typically, treatment is with immune-suppressant drugs and steroids. As treatments go, it isn’t cheap, but it won’t send you running for payroll loans as quickly as others.

So what is lupus?

Lupus, like other autoimmune diseases, is a defect of the immune system. What happens is a glitch in the immune system causes the antibodies that are normally produced by the body to fight off germs to forget the main difference between germs and also the normal cells of the body. Then the antibodies attack normal tissue, which causes problems including joint pain and fever, among others. There are four main types of the disease, according to the Lupus Foundation, the most serious of which is systemic lupus erythematosus, which can lead to kidney, lung, or heart damage and high risk of infection. The unique red rash sufferers get on their faces is how the disease was named. Lupus is Latin for wolf, and the mask like rash was called wolf like within the Middle Ages.

What does this mean for Lady Gaga?

Lady Gaga told ABC she was borderline, meaning not absolutely, positive. That means she doesn't know she has it or not. Lady Gaga does have the Alejandro video coming out soon. Other celebrities have had lupus, including Michael Jackson. Some famous people have even died from it, like Ray Walston, Michael Wayne (John Wayne's son), former President, though many say dictator, of the Philippines Ferdinand Marcos, and it is thought to have also killed Louis May Walcott, the author of Little Women.

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Lupus Foundation