Teri Davis Patane Memorial Horse Camp for Kids
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A Description of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic, multisystem disorder of the immune system, which affects more than 500,000 people in the United States. This statistic shows that SLE affects more people than Leukemia, Multiple Sclerosis, or Muscular Dystrophy. SLE is not contagious, infectious, or malignant. SLE is a disease which creates antibodies that in turn react against the person's own normal tissue. This abnormal response can be extremely damaging and leads to the very manifestations of SLE. The course of the disease is unpredictable and individualized. SLE varies greatly in severity from mild cases, requiring minimal intervention, to those in which significant damage occurs to vital organs (such as the lungs, heart, kidneys and brain) and can ultimately be fatal.

Diagnosis is difficult. Many patients are not diagnosed appropriately for many years. Recently, a new set of criteria has been developed by the American Rheumatism Association to assist with the diagnosis of SLE. It is estimated that approximately 20,000 to 50,000 new cases are diagnosed annually due to the new criteria.

Since there is not a cure for SLE, treatment is varied and is essentially symptom management. Although occasionally Chemotheraputic and Cell Toxic drugs are given. Steroids, Salicylates, Anti-inflammatories and Anti-Malarials are the most common drugs used in treatment. Rest, adequate nutrition and sun protection are essential to people living with SLE. In addition, surgery, pregnancy and stress have shown to exacerbate SLE.

There is pain, fear, grief, depression, and loss of self-image when a person is living with a chronic disease. A person must accept that life may be difficult and learn coping mechanisms which will be continually challenged. The SLE patient must be practical and never lose sight of a cure on the horizon.

For further information regarding this disease, please refer to your local lupus organization.
Please make a donation to the Horse Camp. It's safe, secure and each donation helps!

$20.00 feeds 1 horse for a week

$40.00 buys a helmet for a child

$100.00 shoes a horse for 8 weeks

$250.00 buys a used youth saddle

$500.00 buys hay for 6 horses for 1 months

$1,300.00 sends one kid to camp

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