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Mother and daughter smiling together
Mother and daughter smiling together
Mother and daughter smiling together

Lupus Risk Factors

Unfortunately, exactly what causes lupus isn’t known. Scientists believe it’s triggered by a combination of genetic and environmental factors, such as medications, infections and stress. They also believe that there is a link between the female hormone estrogen and lupus.

Who’s at the highest risk of developing lupus?

We do know who has a stronger chance of developing lupus:

  • Gender: Even though anyone can get lupus, it most often affects women. They’re nine to ten times more likely than men to develop it.

  • Age: Lupus can occur at any age, but most are diagnosed in their 20s and 30s.

  • Race: Lupus is two to three times more common in African-American women than in Caucasian women. It’s also more common in Hispanic, Asian, and Native American women. African-American and Hispanic women are more likely to have severe forms of lupus.

  • Family history: Relatives of people with lupus have a greater chance of developing lupus. Only about 2 percent of children whose mothers have lupus will develop it.

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