20 Enlightening Lupus Statistics and Facts for 2021
Before we look into lupus statistics, it’s important to understand what this condition represents. Stress isn’t missing from our lives, we spend most of the day running errands, and we often feel tired and sick. But are these only manifestations of a stressful life, or could they be linked to an autoimmune disease?
In this article, you will find out more about lupus and how to stay on track with your health. Let’s begin.
Top 10 Lupus Statistics for 2021
- Treatment raises the chances of lupus sufferers to live a normal life span to 80%–90%.
- Women of ages 15 to 44 are most affected by lupus.
- Around 63% of lupus sufferers were originally incorrectly diagnosed.
- About 40% of people with the condition experience kidney complications.
- Lupus death statistics show a 2–5 times higher mortality than in the general population.
- Between 55% and 85% of people with lupus have sleep disorders.
- Lupus complications can lead to death in 10%–15% of sufferers.
- 24% of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) suffer from depression.
- SLE is the most common type of lupus, accounting for 70% of the cases.
- Around 40% of people in the US with this condition are African American.
General Lupus Facts and Statistics
Lupus is an autoimmune disease, which means it involves the body’s immune system attacking its own tissues and organs. The following section will help you gain more general knowledge about this disorder.
1. The lupus survival rate of people infected with this disease can increase up to 80%–90% if they stick to the treatment.
The life expectancy of many patients today is better than ever. If they visit their doctor regularly and follow the prescribed treatment, they can expect to live a normal life span. Of course, let’s not forget that lupus, like many other diseases, varies in intensity and degree.
2. Lupus survival rate statistics reveal that the average 10-year survival rate exceeds 90%, and the 15-year survival rate is approximately 80%.
Even if systemic lupus is linked to a lower life expectancy, mortality in patients with SLE has decreased over the past few decades. Until 1955, the 5-year survival rate of lupus sufferers was under 50%. Earlier, the death of patients with lupus occurred only because of the disease itself, while today, it’s mostly a result of medication side effects.
3. The risk of mortality is two to five times higher for patients with lupus compared to the general population, according to the lupus mortality statistics.
(Oxford University Press)
Lupus can affect almost any organ. Some of its most critical manifestations include renal and neuropsychiatric involvement. According to lupus death rate data, mortality is much higher among people who have lupus. People of color, males, and those showing renal involvement typically have higher mortality rates.
4. Statistics on lupus show that women of ages 15 to 44 are most affected by lupus.
By and large, anyone can get lupus. However, it afflicts mainly women of childbearing age and is one of the leading causes of death in young females. That makes lupus a critical public health issue. As a matter of fact, lupus is one of the top 20 causes of death among girls and women aged 5 to 64 years old. African American and Hispanic women typically develop lupus at a younger age and experience more severe complications.
5. Statistics about lupus indicate that around 63% of people with lupus were originally incorrectly diagnosed.
(Lupus News Today)
Lupus is a very difficult disease in countless ways, but one of the hardest parts for the people who have this condition is the diagnosis. No one can know how many people with the disease may have been misdiagnosed or have an incorrect diagnosis. But that’s not all. Sometimes it takes about six years for people to be diagnosed with lupus after they start showing symptoms.
Noteworthy Facts About Lupus
Given the above, since lupus is a long-term autoimmune disease that is difficult to diagnose, it also has various manifestations. In the section below, you’ll discover more about its forms, symptoms, and treatment. Let’s get down to it.
6. There are four types of lupus, the most common one being systemic lupus erythematosus, which affects about 70% of lupus sufferers.
It should be noted that lupus mortality rates vary between these four types. The cause of lupus in most cases is unknown, and to top that off, it’s difficult to diagnose. However, when people talk about this condition, they’re generally talking about systemic lupus erythematosus. Let’s take a look at the different types of this disease and the percentages of lupus sufferers for each:
- Systemic lupus: about 70%
- Cutaneous lupus: nearly 10%
- Drug-induced lupus: around 10%
- Neonatal lupus: not a permanent condition
7. Statistics about lupus show that 40% of people with the condition experience kidney complications.
(Medical News Today)
People who are affected by lupus are also more vulnerable to infections because the disease and its treatments can weaken the immune system. The difficulties stemming from lupus depend on what body part is affected. Lupus mortality rate data shows that kidney complications are one of the leading causes of death associated with the disease.
8. Lupus statistics show that around 5% of all people with DLE will develop SLE later in life.
(John Hopkins Medicine) (AOCD)
People diagnosed with discoid lupus erythematosus (DLE) experience scarring lupus skin lesions and inflammation. They should avoid sun exposure and wear sunscreen with a very high SPF factor. While this type of lupus mainly affects the skin, around 5% of individuals with DLE are likely to develop SLE later in life.
9. 24% of patients with SLE suffer from depression and 37% from anxiety.
As with any disease, a number of people with lupus can show signs of mental disorders. If that happens, they should reach out to mental health providers. Lupus treatment medications can trigger anxiety and depression, which are very common in people with lupus. Lupus sufferers can manage the condition by looking into AIP diets, making overall improvements in their nutrition and lifestyle habits, doing meditation or yoga, limiting their alcohol intake, etc.
10. Lupus statistics indicate that 50% of all people suffering from the disease are sensitive to sunlight and can get a lupus sun rash.
Lupus sufferers are also sensitive to artificial lighting and other sources of UV radiation. Since UV rays can activate lupus, patients should use sunscreen with Helioplex. If lesions appear in hairy areas, around 70% of people suffering from this condition can experience another common symptom of lupus—hair loss.
Interesting Facts About Lupus
In the following section, we’ll be looking at some more statistics associated with this condition. You’ll learn more about the life habits of lupus sufferers and the challenges that they face every day. Let’s dig a little deeper into that.
11. As per the lupus divorce rate, only 12.5% of patients have a history of divorce.
Whether someone is married is not the main indicator of well-being. However, suffering from a disease may affect relationships. Even though people with lupus can have social difficulties, this is not a barrier to marriage or a leading cause of divorce. Some 40% of the people suffering from this condition have married after the first onset.
12. Lupus demographics data suggests that 1 in 10 lupus patients is male.
Lupus symptoms in men are the same as in women. Yet, some key manifestations may be more severe in men, such as kidney complications. In general, men who have lupus may experience common symptoms such as low blood count, cardiovascular complications, serositis, fever, and weight loss.
13. Lupus statistics by race show that around 40% of people in the US with this condition are African American.
Lupus is more prevalent among people of color. It’s estimated that 40% of the lupus sufferers are black. To break this down further, 38% of the patients are White, 15% are Hispanic, 5% Asian, and 2% Native American.
14. The 10-year survival rates of SLE patients have improved to over 92% over the past 50 years.
These improvements are associated with earlier and better diagnosis, better management of the disease, and organ damage prevention. However, despite all the advances in care, the lupus life expectancy rate is lower than that of the general population. One of the reasons for this is that a slight increase in the overall cancer risk has been associated with SLE. The most frequently occurring cancers in patients with SLE are breast and lung cancers.
15. Around 5 million people have lupus worldwide, and 90% of them are women between the ages of 15 and 19.
Lupus is most present in women, and most people develop the disease between the ages of 15 and 44. The majority of lupus sufferers are misdiagnosed, while some go undiagnosed for years. That’s why initiatives like Lupus Awareness Month were created to raise awareness of this disease and help people recognize its symptoms.
Lupus Prognosis Statistics
In the following statistics, you’ll get more information on the complications that lupus sufferers experience. You’ll also get to know more about the disease’s symptoms. Let’s take a look.
16. Lupus mortality rate data indicates that around 10%–15% of lupus sufferers could die prematurely due to complications of the disease.
(NRCL) (Mayo Clinic)
Having lupus is a never-ending battle. Even though its consequences can be serious, with the right treatment and ongoing management, most patients can expect to live a normal lifespan. Since keeping an optimistic attitude is essential, reputable online therapy sites have been gaining prominence since the onset of the pandemic as a potentially useful resource for people suffering from lupus.
17. Lupus facts and statistics show that between 55% and 85% of people with lupus have sleep disorders.
More than half of patients with SLE have sleep disorders. They also experience fatigue and pain. Many psychological factors affect sleeping, the most frequent ones being anxiety and depression, meaning that lupus might potentially be contributing to the fact that 70 million people in the US have sleep disorders.
18. 1 of the 11 criteria established for the diagnosis of systemic lupus erythematosus is the recognizable lupus facial rash.
(Medicine Net) (Mayo Clinic)
Statistics on lupus show that systemic lupus is eight times more common in females than males and often affects the skin. The symptoms of lupus that patients experience depend on which body systems are influenced. One of the most distinctive signs of the disease is the butterfly rash that lupus sufferers often develop. It appears on the face and covers the cheeks and the nose. To treat this rash, your doctor can prescribe an anti-inflammatory immunosuppressant cream. Many moisturizers can also be helpful for dry skin.
19. There is a direct relationship between elevated sed rate and lupus, with sedimentation rate increasing with more inflammation.
(JHLC) (UC Health)
A normal erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR or sed rate) is usually around 0–20 millimeters per hour in women and 0–12 millimeters per hour in men. When swelling and inflammation are present, blood becomes more saturated with certain proteins, causing the increased sedimentation rate of the red blood cells.
20. Around 20%–25% of SLE patients will experience a lupus flare-up within 1–2 years (and 40%–66% within 5–10 years) after going into low disease activity or remission status.
One of the encouraging facts about lupus is that many SLE patients have periods when the disease is completely inactive. On the other hand, they can still experience flares, when the symptoms get worse. The frequency of flares varies a lot depending on the patients’ characteristics. Sometimes people who have this disease don’t have clear manifestations, making it difficult for them to get the right diagnosis. Some of the symptoms of a lupus flare can only be discovered with laboratory tests.
Lupus can be difficult to live with. Unfortunately, there is no cure for it. Yet, if the patients get the right treatment, it’s not necessarily life-threatening. However, diagnosing the disease accurately can be a challenge since all lupus sufferers have different symptoms. Lupus demographics estimate that this disease strikes mainly women of childbearing age. Hopefully, this article has helped you learn a bit about the disease and how to support people who suffer from it.
Is lupus a disability?
Lupus is considered a disability when it involves two or more organs or body systems. Besides that, it needs to manifest at least two key symptoms. For example, a significant number of people with lupus experience severe fever, fatigue, or spontaneous weight loss. Since lupus causes the immune system to attack the body (instead of protecting it from infections), it can be extremely serious.
Is lupus hereditary?
In general, the cause of lupus in many cases is unknown. Statistics on lupus seem to indicate that this condition is likely brought on by a combination of genetics and the environment. Individuals with an inherited predisposition may develop the disease if they come into contact with something that can trigger it. Some of the potential triggers are sunlight, infections, and certain medications.
What percentage of people with lupus die from it?
The number of deaths associated with lupus has been steadily decreasing for a while, partially thanks to better reporting of the illness. While it might be difficult to come up with an exact number of lupus deaths per year, partially because of the difficulties with diagnosing the disease, most sources agree that diagnosed lupus sufferers have 80%–90% survival rates.
Who is most at risk from lupus?
Women are more likely than men to get lupus, and while this condition can occur at any age, most patients are diagnosed in their 20s and 30s. Furthermore, lupus mostly affects people of color. And finally, statistics reveal that the relatives of lupus sufferers have a greater chance of developing the disease and that around 2% of children whose mothers have lupus will get it.
Is lupus considered a rare disease?
Lupus is not considered a rare disease, although it’s not contagious. It’s more frequent than leukemia, muscular dystrophy, or multiple sclerosis. Based on the available lupus statistics, this disorder is diagnosed worldwide and affects a great number of people.