Lupus Research Institute Applauds Producers of TV Show “House” for Addressing Lupus in Men in Upcoming Season Premiere

NEW YORK, NY – September 2, 2011 – Lupus Research Institute (LRI) commends the producers of the popular television show House for once again raising the topic of lupus in men with the opening episode of its eighth season. Lupus diagnosis and misdiagnosis has been a recurring theme on the show with the star, Dr. Gregory House, often scolding his staff with the phrase “it's never lupus.”

This time it just might be. A preview clip of the first House episode of the fall season depicts a physician misdiagnosing a male patient, assuming his symptoms of fever and joint pain indicate gonorrhea. With his trademark confidence, Dr. House informs her that the proper diagnosis is lupus. Whether or not his diagnosis of lupus is correct remains to be seen when the show airs October 3 on Fox-TV.

But regardless of the outcome, the episode highlights the importance for men as well as their physicians to consider lupus as a possible explanation of symptoms that also include overwhelming fatigue and skin rash. Sometimes what looks like lupus really is lupus.

“While lupus is generally considered a young women’s disease, it does not discriminate against men altogether,” said Margaret Dowd, President of the Lupus Research Institute. “Well-researched medical television shows like House contribute significantly to raising public awareness of serious but lesser-known diseases such as lupus, and can help improve detection and early diagnosis.”

The Lupus Research Institute has invested significantly in novel scientific investigations of male lupus with sizeable grants to researchers at UCLA to uncover the genetic issues involved and at Temple University to advance new understanding of kidney disease in men with lupus.