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Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (Sle) 1

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)


Vignette: A 35-year-old woman presents to her physician with a 1-week history of fatigue, joint pain, fever, and a rash on her cheeks. She also reports sensitivity to the sun. On examination, she has oral ulcers and an erythematous, malar rash. Laboratory studies show a low white blood cell count and a positive test for antinuclear antibodies (ANA). The patient's symptoms are most likely due to an autoimmune disease that is associated with the formation of immune complexes.

Which of the following is the most likely diagnosis?


A) Systemic lupus erythematosus

B) Rheumatoid arthritis

C) Sjogren syndrome

D) Scleroderma

E) Polymyositis


A) Systemic lupus erythematosus


This patient's symptoms of fatigue, joint pain, fever, rash on her cheeks (malar rash), sun sensitivity, oral ulcers, and laboratory findings of low white blood cell count and positive antinuclear antibodies (ANA) test are suggestive of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). SLE is a chronic autoimmune disease characterized by the involvement of multiple organ systems and the production of a variety of autoantibodies, including ANA. The disease is more common in women and often presents between the ages of 20 and 40. Immune complexes, which are formed due to the interaction between autoantibodies and self-antigens, deposit in various tissues and organs, resulting in inflammation and damage. Hence, this patient's symptoms are due to the formation of immune complexes.


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