what can lupus do to your lungs?

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Regular Member

Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 156
   Posted 7/29/2008 9:55 PM (GMT -6)   
i had heard that lupus can effect anything.  i have been having some problems with shortness of breath when i lay down at night.  i have an inhaler cuz i when i get colds i've always had a problem with shortness of breath, however i don't have a cold now.  this has become an every night occurance.  i now use the inhaler at night like clock work.  what types of problems could lupus cause in your lungs?

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 110
   Posted 7/29/2008 10:23 PM (GMT -6)   
I know lupus can cause pleurisy (an inflamation of the lining around the lungs) and that feels a lot like having pneumonia, but without all the fluid in your lungs. You cough a lot, it hurts to cough and to breath. I don't know if it affects them in any other way; I have only dealt with the pleurisy.

Have you tried propping yourself up to sleep at an angle? My son has asthma and, when he has trouble at night, we prop up the head of his bed which helps a lot.
dix: lupus sle Jan. '99, hypo-thyroid Mar. '06
rx: pred. 5mg/day, plaquenil 200mg/day, levothyroxine .112mg/day, premarin .45mg/day, methotrexate 7.5mg/week, folic acid 1mg/day
Also a wife and mother of three.

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Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 7/30/2008 1:45 AM (GMT -6)   

(from a link in my signature . . . at Lupus.org)

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UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 8198
   Posted 7/30/2008 8:54 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Domanique,
   Lupus attacked my lungs a few years ago causing nodules, scaring and infiltrates. I didn't have any symptoms to start with other than a little coughing. Then I started having pain in my lungs and shortness of breath, cold clammy sweats. After several tests the doctor said I had Lupus Pneumonitis.
   My Plumonary Function Test was showing I was loosing my lung function at a fast rate. After 6 months of Cytoxan Infusions they were clear.
   I'm not trying to scare you by telling you this, I just wanted to let you know what it did to me and how it was treated.
   I hope you find soon whats causing your symptoms. I also hope you checked out the link that Rosie gave you.
   Take care and keep us updated. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.
Dx: Lupus,RLS,RA,Asthma,Fibro,Sjogren's,Raynaud's,Divertic, Stroke,Atherosclerosis,Seizures,Neuropathy,CAD
JOB 5:18 For he wounds, but he also binds up; he injures, but his hands also heal.

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 206
   Posted 7/30/2008 10:15 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi- I actually have pleurisy right now.  I was having troubles breathing during our band practice last week-it felt like pinching in my chest whenever I took a breath in, seemed like I just couldn't get a good breath, and I had been so tired-like a limp noodle lately.  I went to the ER and they concluded that I have pleurisy.  They had me taking nabumetone because I have used it for my Lupus with success-so basically an anti-inflammatory like Advil is ideal for this.  They also told me to get plenty of rest and drink extra fluids.  And, my favorite part-make sure I'm taking 10-15 deep breaths an hour to make sure I'm clearing mucus out of my lungs so I do not end up getting pneumonia.  Also, cough after each breath.  So, pretty much breathing hurts very badly with the PL, but my Dr. told me to brace the area that hurts while breathing because sometimes counter-pressure can make it less painful.
Unfortunately I do not know what else Lupus can do to your lungs.  The day I was in the ER I had 2 different docs come in and examine me and only 1 thought this could possibly have something to do with the Lupus or be common with Lupus-the other did not seem to care when I told her I had Lupus and didn't seem to put 2 and 2 together. 
Anyways, I hope things are getting better for you.  It doesn't hurt to at least call your rheumy and see what they suggest.  This weather has been strange this year and all sorts of upper respiratory things are breaking out because of the dampness of the atmosphere.  At least where I live (in the mid-west, lots of rain and flooding in my area).
"Challenges make you discover things about yourself you never really knew."
SLE and Class II Lupus Nephritis

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