S.L.E. Lupus Foundation - Leading the Fight Against Lupus

October 2007

October is Lupus Awareness Month
Learn About Lupus, Get into the Loop!
For more than 35 years, the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation has been providing help for people with lupus and their families, funding lupus research and fostering public awareness of this chronic illness.

What You Should Know About Lupus
Get into the Loop!

This Lupus Awareness Month, we encourage you to team up with the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation and Lupus LA to spread public awareness of this often misdiagnosed and misunderstood disease.

Each Monday, we send you an email featuring important information on a specific topic in lupus, as well as updates on awareness events and fundraisers.

Please forward these emails to your friends and family members to help them learn more about lupus.

Lupus: Thinking, Memory and Behavior

In about half of people with lupus, the disease attacks the brain and spinal cord. Lupus can also affect the peripheral nervous system, which is made up of the nerve fibers that give skin and muscles the power for feeling and movement. These developments can be very frightening and frustrating. Thankfully, there are steps a person can take to make things easier. Doctors who specialize in these complications are called "neurologists."

What is the most common kind of lupus brain involvement? Many people with lupus -- at least one in five -- have trouble thinking clearly at some point and experiences memory problems, confusion, fatigue, or difficulty expressing thoughts. Called cognitive dysfunction, the condition likely occurs because blood stops flowing as smoothly to the brain as it should. More »

What is "lupus fog?" A part of cognitive dysfunction, some people with lupus get spells of "fogginess" when, for several seconds or minutes, they can not get to information that they know is in their heads. More »

What can be done about cognitive dysfunction and "lupus fogs?" Reassurance from loved ones helps a lot. So can behavioral counseling, physical or speech therapy, biofeedback, techniques for relaxing the body and mind, and concentration strategies. More »

Do other brain problems happen in people with lupus? People with lupus have a higher risk for stroke, especially the third or so who have "antiphospholipid antibodies" that make blood "sticky" and more likely to clot and stop or slow blood flow to the brain. More »

Can lupus change emotions and behavior? Some people with lupus have mild but noticeable changes in behavior such as unusual feelings of fear or lack of fear, or loss of interest or curiosity. More commonly, the fatigue and pain of lupus is draining to the point that a person changes his or her outlook on life. More »

How is lupus brain involvement diagnosed? A doctor can do a physical examination, test blood and spinal fluid, or take imaging tests or electrical studies of the brain. More »

Will a person with lupus and brain problems be OK? No matter whether the problem is mild or severe, there often are effective and surprising ways of handling lupus thinking problems, memory difficulties, and behavior issues. More »

Haga clic aquí para la información del lupus en español »

Central Park Goes Orange for New York Pumpkin Festival and Lupus Awareness Month

Join us in Central Park on Saturday, October 27th as we give away 7,500 pumpkins in partnership with Camp Sunshine and the New York City Parks Department

This Saturday, visitors to the world's most famous park will see more than just pumpkin-colored leaves on the trees as Central Park gets decked in orange for the first-ever Camp Sunshine New York Pumpkin Festival. Thousands of pumpkins and bright orange lupus awareness wristbands will be distributed by the Foundation at the all-day family event that will feature the largest jack-o-lantern display in the city's history, as well as live music, face painting, and pumpkin carving.

The festival is organized by the City of New York Parks & Recreation Department and Camp Sunshine, a national retreat for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families. The event begins at noon and ends at 8:00 p.m., with the lighting of the jack-o-lantern display at 5:30 p.m. Visitors should enter through the 72nd street entrance on Central Park West.

As a presenting sponsor and long-time partner of Camp Sunshine, the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation will host the festival's Pumpkin Patch and give away gourds to the first 7,500 attendees. Since October is Lupus Awareness Month, the Foundation will also be passing out lupus wristbands and fact cards, and signing up new members to spread awareness of the often-misunderstood autoimmune disease that affects more than 1.5 million women, men and children nationwide.

"For the past eight summers, we have sent New York City kids affected by lupus and their families to Camp Sunshine for a much-needed week of joy, peace and relaxation," said S.L.E. Lupus Foundation Executive Director, Margaret Dowd. "The Pumpkin Festival offers an exciting opportunity for our organization to help bring New Yorkers together for a fun day in the park to support a wonderful cause and to educate more people about lupus."

The New York Pumpkin Festival is free and open to the public. For more information and directions, call the Foundation at 212-685-4118 or visit the Pumpkin Festival website.


Click here for the complete list of Lupus Awareness Month activities »

Join Us in the Fight Against Lupus!
S.L.E. Lupus Foundation logo

Take the opportunity this lupus awareness month to become a member of the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation and help to increase public awareness, provide education, and fund research leading to new treatments and a cure for lupus.

If you live in Southern California and would like to become a member of Lupus LA, email info@lupusla.org to receive a membership form by mail.


Contact Information

phone: 212.685.4118

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