10 Early Signs of Lupus

7. Painful, swollen joints

Inflammation can cause pain, stiffness, and visible swelling in your joints, particularly in the morning. It may be mild at first and gradually become more obvious. Like other symptoms of lupus, joint problems can come and go.

If over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications don’t help, see your doctor. There may be better treatment options. But your doctor must determine if your joint problems are caused by lupus or another condition, such as arthritis.

8. Gastrointestinal problems

Some people with lupus experience occasional heartburn, acid reflux, or other gastrointestinal problems. Mild symptoms can be treated with OTC antacids. If you have frequent bouts of acid reflux or heartburn, try cutting down on the size of your meals, and avoid beverages containing caffeine. Also, don’t lie down right after a meal. If symptoms continue, see your doctor to rule out other conditions.

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