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The systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is the prototypic multisystem autoimmune disorder with a broad spectrum of clinical presentations encompassing almost all organs and tissues. The aetiology of SLE is unknown, but certain risk factors have been identified that lead to immune system complications with antibody formation and immune complex deposition. There are four main types of lupus: neonatal, discoid, drug-induced, and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), the type that affects the majority of patients. SLE predominantly affects women, with a reported peak female-to-male ratio of 12:1 during the childbearing years. The development of SLE is a complicated immune process that is followed by inequality of B- and T-lymphocytes, the production of autoantibodies, and the formation of immune complexes. Cytokines are thought to play a key role in SLE. Criteria were created to aid in the diagnosis, focusing on clinical manifestations and antibody profiles specialized to SLE. Treatment options are limited to a few medications to control the inflammation and decrease organ damage. Continuing investigations into the pathogenesis of SLE has led to new discoveries, making more medications available to treat this difficult disease.
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: A Review of the Clinical Approach to Diagnosis and Update on Current Targeted Therapies JOANNE SZCZYGIEL CUNHA, MD; KATARZYNA GILEK-SEIBERT, MD
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