Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
Help from the National Health Fund
The National Health Fund provides subsidies for persons living with Lupus. The benefits can be yours by enrolling for a NHF card. The yellow NHF application form should be completed with the applicant’s information, including your TRN as well as your Doctor’s name, address, telephone number, registration number and signature.
If you already have a NHF card, the card can be updated with a new condition by completing a blue NHF change form. This form must be completed with both the applicant’s and the doctor’s information.
SEE NHF SUBSIDIES - LUPUS
What is Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (Lupus)?
Lupus is a long-term disease that causes the body’s immune system to attack healthy cells. It affects multiple organs in the body and can be quite painful. Lupus is difficult to diagnose, may range from mild to severe and has no known cause. The disease is found to be more common among females ages 15 to 44.
Common Symptoms Experienced?
The symptoms come and go and may differ from patient to patient. They may include the following:
- Prolonged tiredness or weakness
- Weight loss or gain
- Sun or light sensitivity
- Rashes and sores
- Hair loss
- Chest pains
- Trouble breathing
- Easy bruising
- Joint pain and stiffness
- Aches and Swelling
- Brown foamy urine
- Kidney or eye problems
How is Lupus Treated?
There is no cure for lupus, so treatment will depend on your symptoms and needs. Treatment aims to prevent flares, treat symptoms when they happen, and reduce organ damage and other problems. Treatment might include medicines to reduce swelling and pain, calm your immune system to prevent it from attacking the organs and tissues in your body, reduce or prevent damage to the joints, and reduce or prevent organ damage.
Tips on how to take your medication
- Carefully follow the instructions outlined by your doctor
- Take your medication same time each day
- Set daily alerts as a reminder to take your medication
- Keep a medicine calendar. Make notes each time you take your dose.
- Travel with your medications daily
- Store medication in a dry place
- If you forget to take your medication, do not take double the next time
- Don't share your meds with anyone
Healthy Practices for persons living with Lupus
Wash or sanitize hands frequently
Don’t keep dirty objects near or on the body
Use sunscreen or wear sun-protective clothing
Don’t leave the skin exposed to too much sunlight
Get lots of sleep
Try not to worry or stress
Avoid cuts and bruises
Don’t allow cuts to get infected