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Thursday, January 12, 2017

Lupus: What we can learn from Selena Gomez's illness


Lupus: What we can learn from Selena Gomez's illness

The 24-year-old singer has been struggling with depression and panic attacks, which have been linked with the condition. She underwent chemotherapy a year earlier in a bid to fight symptoms of the auto-immune disease, which has no cure.

Lupus causes the immune system to be unable to distinguish between foreign invaders and healthy tissue. The disease can damage any part of the body, including joints, skin and internal organs.

Gomez’s celebrity status helped create awareness about the disease which is often poorly understood. The young pop music sensation when talk about her disease many people learn about this poorly understood autoimmune disease.

Lupus affects different people in different ways

No two people with lupus may experience similar symptoms. An estimated 1.5 million people in the US have the condition and majority of its victims are women. Lupus is among poorly known conditions, Gomez ailment was when several people first time learn about lupus. Her statements about her condition created awareness about this autoimmune disease.

"As many of you know, around a year ago I revealed that I have lupus, an illness that can affect people in different ways," the 24-year-old Gomez said. "I want to be proactive and focus on maintaining my health and happiness and have decided that the best way forward is to take some time off.”

Hardest part of lupus is to deal with other people

She underwent chemotherapy in 2014 at The Meadows recovery center in Arizona for two weeks. At the time, her rep did not disclose any specific reason for her rehab stint, but did say it had nothing to do with substance abuse.

Her rep’s categorical statement didn’t stop gossip mongers from reporting otherwise. It was very disturbing for young artist to face such rumors along with her battle with the disease.

“I wanted so badly to say, ‘You guys have no idea. I’m in chemotherapy. You’re a**holes,'” Gomez expressed her frustration. “I locked myself away until I was confident and comfortable again.”

Lupus has side effects
Anxiety, panic attacks and depression are side-effects that lupus causes and it further adds to the misery of its sufferers. Kenneth Farber, co-CEO and copresident of the Lupus Research Alliance, told People that the disease is "sometimes very misunderstood." "It is not commonly known that depression, anxiety, and panic attacks can be side effects of lupus," Farber said.

Majority of Gomez’s fans know this fact when she cancelled her world tour and announced to take time off to deal with side-effects of her disease. Gomez, issued the statement in the midst of her Revival world tour back in August 2016, “I’ve discovered that anxiety, panic attacks and depression can be side effects of lupus, which can present their own challenges.”

“I want to be proactive and focus on maintaining my health and happiness and have decided that the best way forward is to take some time off ... I need to face this head on to ensure I am doing everything possible to be my best,” said the former Disney Channel star.

It’s debilitating
The disease can also bring about a ton of other symptoms, including swollen joints, fever, fatigue, rashes, chest pain, hair loss, anemia, and more. It literally cripples one’s ability to carry out normal life activities. We know Selena Gomez has decided to cancel her world tour last year and before this, she cancelled half of her Stars Dance tour in 2014 when she was initially diagnosed with lupus.

It breaks the victims from inside
Lupus does not only affect people by crippling their ability to perform physical tasks, it also takes its toll on emotional strength and one’s inner self.  Gomez mentioned how the disease broken her internally in her American Music Award for the favorite female artist in pop/rock category acceptance speech.

"I think it's safe to say that most of you know a lot of life whether I like it or not," she said in her speech. "I had to stop because I had everything, and I was absolutely broken inside. I kept it all together enough to where I would never let you down, but I kept it too much together to where I let myself down."

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