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sabrinabythesea

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 #1 
I was scrolling through what I think was the Johns Hopkins lupus site, in a hurry, half paying attention... I think it said women 35-44 with lupus are FIFTY times more likely to have a heart attack than women without lupus in the same age range.

Can that possibly be true? Is it really this bad?
Cakelady

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 #2 
It used to be that lupus hitting your kidneys usually meant something not so good. Meaning more lupus patients used to die because of their kidneys. Over the years it has changed. Lupus affects the heart more now and can be fatal. Meds like pred can raise your blood pressure etc. some people have also received their lupus dx after having a stroke

Hope that answered your question

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sabrinabythesea

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 #3 
This is a terrible disease.  I'm so scared. Thank you.
Cakelady

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 #4 
Do you have a lupus dx
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sabrinabythesea

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 #5 
Yes, four years ago. By a rheumatologist.
taffylinden

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 #6 
I think lupus has always affected the heart, but the studies showing the connection are newer. Women with SLE do have up to 50 times greater risk of having heart attacks. This is largely due to an increased tendency toward atherosclerosis, also known as hardening of the arteries. My father died of atherosclerotic heart disease. He did not have lupus. I am at very high risk, so you can bet I take this very seriously. There is, however, no need to panic.

Atherosclerosis means inflammation of the lining of the arteries. This can happen due to high cholesterol, smoking, or inflammatory diseases like lupus. Inflammation damages the lining, allowing the LDL (bad) cholesterol to "leak" into the arteries. White blood cells swarm in to attack. These cells mix with the cholesterol and form a layer of plaque in the arteries. As it builds, it can block the arteries, reducing or cutting off blood flow. If that happens, a heart attack or stroke could result. 

But your risk may be substantially lower if you

a. watch your diet and have your cholesterol monitored as your doc suggests
b. get regular exercise AND
c. take lupus medications that reduce inflammation

When you're tempted to worry, do something healthy for yourself instead. 




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