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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

I was having a conversation with someone at a hospital today about both Lupus and MS.

Long story short this person said something that confused me and I wanted to know if any of the smart folks on this board could enlighten me here.

They said, "Lupus is a idiopathic disease and MS is not".:eek::eek::eek:

OK, what the heck does this mean? I thought Lupus and MS were very similar and therefore both of them would be idiopathic diseases????

What the heck does idiopathic even mean???

Sorry for the dumb question but my curiosity is up now.:hehe:
 

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Hi Karen,

Here are two dictionary definitions:

http://www.answers.com/topic/idiopathic-disease

http://www.medilexicon.com/medicaldictionary.php?t=25567

Basically one definition says that idiopathic means we don't know why something happens, and the other definition says that it is internal in origin - ie not an infection or injury from external sources.

Whichever definition you use, your friend/conversationist doesn't know what they are talking about. Both lupus and MS are autoimmune diseases and whist medical science doesn't understand everything about them they are definately not mysteries.

So according to both definitions you can't call lupus or MS idiopathic diseases.

Don't worry about what she/he said. It is a no value comment.

X C X
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Cath,

Thanks. I was not worried at all it just got me thinking.

I am wondering and trying to figure out what they meant by their statement.
 

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I agree with Cath and would say it is a nonsense comment. If you read about a symptom such as urticaria it gives a number of possible causes for the symptom but then says a certain proportion are idiopathic, meaning there is no known reason for them.
As far as I know there is no known reason or cause for MS either.

( I wouldn't say the diseases are similar either but I guess that's beside the point here )

It's the same Greek root, 'idios', as "idiom" and "idiot" meaning something like private or individual or belonging or pertaining to oneself or itself, if I remember rightly.

:)
Clare
 

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Clare.T;516633 said:
I agree with Cath and would say it is a nonsense comment. If you read about a symptom such as urticaria it gives a number of possible causes for the symptom but then says a certain proportion are idiopathic, meaning there is no known reason for them.
As far as I know there is no known reason or cause for MS either.

( I wouldn't say the diseases are similar either but I guess that's beside the point here )

It's the same Greek root, 'idios', as "idiom" and "idiot" meaning something like private or individual or belonging or pertaining to oneself or itself, if I remember rightly.

:)
Clare
Thanks Clare. I am curious as to why you do not think that MS and Lupus are similar. I always thought they were. Boy do I have some learning to do huh.:rotfl:
 

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MS resembles some types of CNS lupus, but that is only a tiny bit of lupus. Lupus can effect any part of the body, whereas MS affects the nervous system only (in my very limited understanding of it).

Many (probably most) people with lupus don't have cns disease as part of their lupus, and even within CNS lupus only some of it resembles MS.

Lupus is just such a varied disease, it has MUCH more variation in it than MS. You can easily get two people with lupus who don't share any symptoms at all.

I don't consider my lupus to be ideopathic - mine is inherited as my family is full of people with autoimmune disease (sister, father, grandmother, great aunt, etc etc etc).



hth

raglet
 

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Lupus is a connective tissue or collagen vascular disease but MS is neurological. Lupus is autoimmune, the prototypical autoimmune disease, and the presence of auto antibodies is critical to diagnosis.
MS is only suspected to be autoimmune and there are no known antibody associations. Diagnosis is quite different.

Lupus is a multi system/organ disease with infinitely variable disease expressions and combinations of symptoms whereas MS symptoms are caused by one particular area of damage, to the myelin sheath of the nerves. ( I am not sure I have expressed that very well).

I have the impression that MS is always progressive even though the progression takes various forms. Lupus isn't described as a progressive disease because it typically isn't.

Treatment is quite different. Prednisone is the only medicine I can think of that's used in both and in fact some MS medicines can worsen lupus if I recall rightly.

There might be certain similar symptoms but lupus has many symptoms of a wide variety of other diseases, the "great imitator", which is part of the difficulty diagnosing it. Diagnosis sometimes has to be as much by exclusion.
I think it is APS not SLE that is more likely to be misdiagnosed as MS just because it can have some similar symptoms and MS is better known. I have certainly never heard of lupus alone being misdiagnosed as MS,for what that's worth. A few people have both SLE and MS.

To my way of thinking, to say that SLE is in the same category as MS is like saying it's the same as Parkinson's or diabetes 1 or any disease that's not congenital, acquired or infectious.

:)
Clare
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks Raglet and Clare for taking the time to post here and share your thoughts.

Raglet

I am curious when you mention that you do not think your Lupus is idiopathic because other family members suffer with auto immune diseases, are you referring to Lupus for other family members or stuff like Diabetes,...etc...?
 

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I am sure not going to argue about it, but I'd say the autoimmune diseases trend found in families is idiopathic too simply because nobody knows exactly what's caused them or why some people have a certain expression of autoimmune disease activity and other family members a different expression - for example why should one family member have hashimoto's another SLE and another other discoid or frank RA. Same mystery plus some, as in the individual.
:)
Clare
 

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Clare.T;516736 said:
I am sure not going to argue about it, but I'd say the autoimmune diseases trend found in families is idiopathic too simply because nobody knows exactly what's caused them or why some people have a certain expression of autoimmune disease activity and other family members a different expression - for example why should one family member have hashimoto's another SLE and another other discoid or frank RA. Same mystery plus some, as in the individual.
:)
Clare
Makes sense and sure makes you think hard huh.:wink2:
 
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