Obesity may worsen symptoms for patients with lupus, according to a study.
In a recent Arthritis Care & Research study of 148 women with lupus, obesity was linked with worse disease activity, depressive symptoms, and symptoms of pain and fatigue.
The association was consistent across different definitions of obesity.
The study's findings highlight the need for lifestyle interventions in lupus patients who are overweight to help reduce health risks and the debilitating symptoms of the disease.
"In addition to reducing the risk of comorbid conditions such as cardiovascular disease, lifestyle interventions to improve body composition may reduce the severity of symptoms experienced by persons with lupus," said senior author Dr. Patricia Katz, of the University of California, San Francisco.
Lead author Dr. Sarah Patterson noted that the findings have important clinical implications because the patient-reported outcomes we measured, particularly pain and fatigue, are known to have profound effects on quality of life and remain a major area of unmet need for people with lupus.
The findings have been reported in the journal Arthritis Care & Research.