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Fatigue in lupus and other stories . . .

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f3405 (Published 28 May 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f3405

By a nice irony, systemic lupus erythematosus first became widely known to the public when Dr Greg House, the curmudgeonly hero of the television series House, kept declaring that “it’s never lupus.” For the editors of the journal Lupus, the opposite is true—and sadly, this also goes for patients whose lives are completely dominated by the condition. As with most severe chronic conditions, fatigue is a prominent feature in systemic lupus erythematosus, and a paper in Lupus (2013, doi:10.1177/0961203313486948) shows that levels of fatigue are closely related to levels of pain and depression, and not to markers of disease activity. The authors suggest that by treating these symptoms more effectively we should also be able to alleviate fatigue in systemic lupus erythematosus.

The commonest reason for healthy people to see doctors regularly is because they have been found on two or three occasions to have blood pressure above a certain arbitrary level. Most of these individuals then take two or more drugs for the rest of …

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