The moment you notice a tiny rash on your arm or an ache where there didn't used to be one, it's easy to fall head first down the rabbit hole of googling your symptoms. Is it something serious, or are you just in the beginning stages of a cold? When it comes to watching out for your health, it's helpful to know what to look for. According to experts, these under-the-radar symptoms of lupus might not immediately point to the disease.
In case you're not familiar with what lupus is, here's a primer. "Lupus, also known as systemic lupus erythematosus, is a disease in which one's own immune system attacks parts of one's body," Chirag Shah, MD, a board-certified emergency medicine physician and medical reviewer at PollMed, tells Bustle. This can lead to a variety of symptoms. "While there is no absolutely definitive test for lupus, most people with lupus will test positive on an anti-nuclear antibody (ANA) lab test," he says, so reach out to your doctor if you are concerned. If your diagnosis is confirmed, you might be treated with medications that will calm your immune system, such as steriods and anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), says Dr. Shah. The earlier you can be evaluated the better, so don't hold off getting checked out if you notice a number of symptoms.