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Public Lacks Awareness of Serious Disease With Life-Threatening Complications
Date:5/7/2009

May is National Lupus Awareness Month

WASHINGTON, May 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --Most women likely can describe warning signs and health risks associated with breast cancer and heart disease, but according to a recent online survey relatively few are aware of another potentially fatal disease that disproportionately strikes young women between the ages of 15 and 44. The disease is lupus.

Although more than 1.5 million Americans have lupus, the public mostly is unaware of the potentially disabling and life-altering health effects of lupus. According to a national online survey conducted for the Ad Council, eighty percent of young women in the United States say they have little or no knowledge of lupus, yet eight in ten new cases of lupus will develop among women of childbearing age.

Lupus develops when the immune system goes out of balance, causing it to become destructive to any major organ or tissue in the body, including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, and joints. Its health effects include heart attacks, stokes, seizures, and organ failure.

May is National Lupus Awareness Month. Now in its thirty-second year, Lupus Awareness Month is observed to disseminate medically sound information about lupus, increase public understanding of the physical, emotional, and economic impact of the disease, and provide support, services, and hope to all people affected by lupus. As part of Lupus Awareness Month, the Lupus Foundation of America and its chapters, and nearly 100 lupus organizations from around the globe, will observe May 10 as World Lupus Day, to highlight lupus as a worldwide health issue that affects people of all races and ethnicities.

Here in the United States, lupus is two to three times more common among African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Asians, and Native Americans than among Caucasians. While lupus s
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SOURCE Lupus Foundation of America
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