Cutaneous lupus or skin lupus is an autoimmune disease that develops due to the attack launched by the immune system on skin cells causing redness, pain, itching, and eventual scarring. Skin lupus may develop on its own or can occur as a part of systemic lupus erythematosus, the severe form of lupus that affects various parts of your body including blood vessels, kidney, lungs, joints, heart, and brain.
What Are The Different Types Of Skin Lupus?
Three types of cutaneous lupus are:
- Discoid Lupus Erythematosus: This type of lupus causes a permanent red rash on the skin that may leave scars.
- Subacute Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus: It causes sores on regions of the skin like torso and arms that are frequently exposed to the sun.
- Acute Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus: Rashes on the upper cheeks and nose is a characteristic of this type of lupus.
What Are The Causes Of Lupus?
The exact cause of lupus remains unknown but it is certain that the disease is not of contagious nature. Person to person transmission of the disease can never happen. However, enough proof exists for the role played by genes in the disease, as peculiarities in your genetic composition can influence the risk of developing lupus. Several studies are going on to find out the causes of lupus by analyzing immune system problems, environmental factors, lifestyle habits like smoking, etc.
What Are The Symptoms Of Skin Lupus?
The typical signs of lupus include:
- Sensitivity to sun
- Hair loss
Joint aches, fatigue, and headache can accompany the above-given lupus symptoms.
Appearance Of Lupus Skin Rash
Lupus rash can manifest in the following ways:
- Red ring-shaped sores: They may appear on body parts like arms, neck, and shoulders that are frequently exposed to the sun. The lesions do not cause itching or scar but may discolor your skin over time.
- Butterfly-shaped rash: It covers the bridge of your nose and cheeks. Although the rash does not leave any scars, you can notice discoloration on your skin.
- Rash between knuckles and fingers
- Red coin-shaped rashes: They appear on your face and scalp and can leave scars on your skin. It does not cause itching or pain.
Making significant lifestyle changes like avoiding exposure to sun and quitting habits like smoking is generally recommended as part of skin lupus treatment.