The Great Imitator: Increasing Awareness and Treatment of Lupus in Communities of Color
National Medical Association
African-Americans are three times more likely to develop systemic lupus erythematosus than are whites. Additionally, African-Americans endure more severe symptoms, such as lupus nephritis. African-American women in particular suffer tremendously from the disease. Furthermore, lupus deaths among African-Americans have spiked alarmingly in the past two decades. Such facts create a disturbing health inequity between African-Americans and whites and other racial groups. Current statistics illuminate the need for intensified research efforts to identify the etiology of this disease, improve diagnostic tools, enhance awareness of lupus and its symptoms among African-Americans, and develop comprehensive medicinal and therapeutic treatments.