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Is Lupus Contagious? Strategies for Identification and Prevention

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Medically Reviewed By: Alia Hanif Khan
May 27, 2024No Comments

Updated on May 27, 2024


Lupus is not transmissible from one person to another, not even through intimate contact or sexual activity. Researchers believe this autoimmune condition arises from a blend of genetic predisposition and environmental factors.

Approximately 1.5 million Americans are fighting with this condition. The disease manifests when the immune system malfunctions, targeting tissues such as joints, skin, lungs, kidneys, and heart. This leads to inflammation, potentially causing risks to these vital organs.

Continue reading this article to delve into the reasons behind is lupus contagious or not, recognize the symptoms, and explore strategies for minimizing susceptibility.

What Leads to Lupus?

Lupus, an autoimmune disorder, occurs when the immune system misidentifies and attacks the body’s own tissues. Typically, the immune system works to defend against external threats like bacteria and viruses using immune cells and antibodies. However, in an autoimmune condition, it mistakenly targets internal organs such as joints and skin as foreign invaders, leading to damage.

The answer to whether is lupus contagious or not, is, it is not! Individuals cannot transmit the condition through skin contact, blood, sweat, saliva, or any other means. However, if a mother carries certain autoantibodies associated with lupus, her child may develop neonatal lupus, leading to skin rashes, liver issues, low blood cell counts, or heart complications. Fortunately, these symptoms usually resolve within a few months with no lasting effects.

Lupus manifest symptoms due to systemic inflammation targeting specific body parts. It is believed to result from a combination of genetic, hormonal, and environmental factors. Consequently, which also means lupus is not a communicable disease like flu, or covid.

Learn More About Lupus

Who is Susceptible to Developing Lupus?

Risk of developing lupus is higher if:

Is Lupus Contagious? Know its Causes

While the exact cause of lupus still remains unclear, the question of whether is lupus contagious has the same answer, which is no.

Nonetheless, a few contributing factors are:

Individuals with a close genetic relative affected by the condition are at an elevated risk of developing it themselves. However, it is more common to have a family member with another autoimmune disorder than lupus. Moreover, the association between estrogen and lupus has not been proven yet.

Symptoms of Lupus:

Lupus can readily induce a range of nonspecific symptoms that may manifest in or multiple areas, depending on the organs affected. These symptoms include:

  • Skin eruptions
  • Low-grade fevers
  • Joint and muscle discomfort
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Heightened sensitivity to light
  • Oral ulcers
  • Hair thinning
  • Chest pain
  • Butterfly-shaped rashes across nose
  • Rashes across cheeks
  • Sores in nose or mouth

Individuals with lupus may not exhibit every conceivable symptom and may observe fluctuations in their symptoms, characterized by periods of remission and flares. However, there are potential treatment options available that can alleviate the severity of flares and extend the duration between them.

Is Lupus Contagious? Strategies for Lupus Prevention

Limit Sunlight Exposure It is suggested by Dermatologists at Revival, to minimize direct sunlight exposure if it induces a rash. Using a sunscreen with an SPF of 70 or higher, effectively blocking both UVA and UVB rays.
Avoid Certain Medications Avoiding certain medications such as antibiotics like trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim) and mis linocycline (Minocin), which can increase sensitivity to sunlight.
Proper Stress Management It is essential to develop stress management strategies such as engaging in activities like yoga, meditation or even receiving massages which can help in soothing the mind.
Get Adequate Sleep It is important to go to bed early enough every night to at least have seven to eight hours of proper rest.


Understanding whether is lupus contagious or not, and recognizing its symptoms, can help in identifying suitable preventive strategies and managing the autoimmune condition effectively. One notable aspect is exploring potential treatment options and staying informed by taking proactive measures. By doing so, individuals with lupus can improve their quality of life and minimize the impact of the disease.

Hoor Abdul Ghani

Author Hoor Abdul Ghani

Hoor skillfully combines her Biomedical Engineering background with a passion for research, making a notable impact in healthcare. Her marketing flair adds a fresh and unique perspective to the field. With diverse skills and experiences, Hoor is actively contributing to clinical research.

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