If you are searching “The Woodlands TX best lupus doctors near me,” then contact Advanced Rheumatology of Houston today. The sole rheumatologist at our clinic, Dr. Brionez, works closely with patients to help them overcome their rheumatologic conditions. Lupus is a rheumatologic condition, which is what rheumatologists diagnose and treat.
Rheumatologic conditions or illnesses affect connective tissues like joints. However, other tissues such as organs, ligaments, muscles, and bones can be targets. Each of these illnesses is complex and should be monitored closely by patients and rheumatologists. Lupus is a disease that is quite complex because of the range of severity it has.
Fortunately, Dr. Brionez has more than ten years in rheumatology. Her experience makes her a knowledgeable and professional lupus doctor. Of course, she can help patients with a number of conditions. Below, you can view the full list of rheumatologic illnesses she can diagnose and treat.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Psoriatic Arthritis
- Ankylosing Spondylitis
- Sjögren’s Syndrome
- Polymyalgia Rheumatica
As you can see, Dr. Brionez has experience and knowledge with a variety of rheumatologic conditions. She can diagnose and treat arthritis, vasculitis, scleroderma, lupus, and more. Schedule an appointment today by calling Advanced Rheumatology of Houston.
What is Lupus?
Lupus is an autoimmune disease that attacks numerous parts of the body. Immune systems normally fight off infections, eliminate pathogens, and target foreign particles in the body. Autoimmune disease target healthy tissue, which causes inflammation and complications with parts of the body. Joints, organs, and skin are affected by this disease. This wide range of influence gives lupus a very complex design.
This disease also showcases a large range of symptoms and severity. Patients can experience mild cases, while more severe scenarios affect the vital organs. There is no known cause of lupus or why it has a broad spectrum of effects on the body. Lupus may appear in anyone, but there are some demographics more affected than others.
Firstly, 20 percent of lupus patients are children. Children and teenagers are affected by this disease, but it is rare for children under the age of five to develop the illness. Secondly, females develop lupus ten times more often. Often times, females entering or going through puberty develop lupus. Finally, African Americans and Asians are the demographics most affected by lupus.
Lupus symptoms can represent another type of disease, such as the flu. Fever, fatigue, and weight loss are very common symptoms in a dozen other diseases. So, lupus is never brought up first by a primary doctor. In fact, a primary doctor will most likely refer patients to a rheumatologist for more detailed examinations.
You can find the full list of symptoms below. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms or multiple, then see a health care professional as soon as possible.
- Weight loss
- Hair loss
- Blood clots
- Stomach pain
- Chest pain
- Cold toes and fingers
- Swollen or sore joints (arthritis)
- Neurologic conditions (seizures, strokes)
- Mouth or nose sores
- Kidney problems
- Pregnant women may have a miscarriage
Diagnosing and Treating Lupus
Dr. Brionez will start the patient’s diagnosis by examining their symptoms. She will rule out other rheumatologic conditions before jumping to lupus. Tests will be run in order to rule those other options out. One of the tests she may run is known as an ANA test. This test detects antinuclear antibodies in the body, which causes the immune system to attack healthy tissues. Antinuclear antibodies are found in almost all lupus patients.
If the patient’s ANA test detects the antibodies, then they will be diagnosed with lupus. Additional tests will be run in order to identify more specific antibodies associated with the disease. Patients with negative results most likely have another condition.
Once a patient is diagnosed with lupus, it is important to gauge the severity of the disease. Severe cases require more specific medications, while more mild cases can benefit from the general lupus medication. There is no cure for lupus, so treating the symptoms and suppressing the immune system’s attacks is the objective. Patients are also encouraged to make some lifestyle changes in order to live longer and comfortable lives.
Firstly, antimalarial drugs are given to all lupus patients. These drugs once fought off malaria in patients. Now, it is used to treat symptoms like rashes, mouth sores, fatigue, and lupus-related arthritis. The medication also helps reduce flare-ups.
Secondly, severe cases use corticosteroids, which are used to suppress the immune system. Lupus has the potential to be life-threatening when it affects the brain, lungs, heart, or kidneys. So, the objective of corticosteroids is to keep the attacks suppressed. In some corticosteroids, they can reduce pain.
Finally, biologics are a good option for mild cases. Benylsta is the most recent biologic approved by the FDA. In fact, it is the first FDA approved drug for lupus since 1955. In 2019, it was approved for children.
Lupus patients should take part in the SLE-BRAVE research study. The study is testing an investigational drug paired with lupus therapy. If successful, the treatment will be used for current and future lupus patients. So, if you want to help test a new treatment for lupus, then this is a great opportunity. Visit our lupus research study page in order to learn more about it.
The Woodlands TX Best Lupus Doctors Near Me
Finding the right lupus doctor for patients may be difficult, but Dr. Brionez wants to make it easy. Patients may schedule an appointment at Advanced Rheumatology of Houston by calling (281) 766-7886. Dr. Brionez will help patients feel comfortable with lupus and live better lives. There is no longer a need to suffer from such a disease.
Patients should also visit our Houston location page for additional details on the practice. The SLE-BRAVE research study is a great opportunity that may pave the way for a better treatment plan. Lupus patients should consider participating as it only benefits. For that reason, stop searching “The Woodlands TX best lupus doctors near me” and start calling.
Fun Facts about The Woodlands
- he first high school opened in 1976!
- There are almost 150 parks in The Woodlands area!
- Creekside is one of nine villages that make up the Woodlands Township.
- Find more fun facts about The Woodlands here.