Lupus occurs when your immune system attacks healthy tissue in your body. It's likely that lupus results from a combination of your genetics and your environment. It appears that people with an inherited predisposition for lupus may develop the disease when they come into contact with something in the environment that can trigger lupus. The cause for lupus in most cases, however, is unknown. Some potential triggers include:

  • Sunlight. Exposure to the sun may bring on lupus skin lesions or trigger an internal response in susceptible people.
  • Medications. Lupus can be triggered by certain types of anti-seizure medications, blood pressure medications and antibiotics. People who have drug-induced lupus usually see their symptoms go away when they stop taking the medication.
Oct. 26, 2011

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