The Lupus Foundation of America, North Carolina Chapter (LFANC) will host support groups for those living with lupus, their families and caregivers on Wednesday, Jan. 15 from 6-7:30 p.m. at Hemphill Branch Library, 2301 West Vandalia Rd. in Greensboro, and Sunday, Jan. 26 from 2:30-4 p.m. at Highland Presbyterian Church, 2380 Cloverdale Ave. in Winston-Salem.
The Greensboro group meets the third Wednesday of each month, while the Winston-Salem gathering is held every fourth Sunday. There is no charge to attend the meeting, and drop-ins are welcome.
This group provides participants with an opportunity to receive introductory information about lupus, encourage the expression of concerns, provide an opportunity to share experiences, encourage and support positive coping strategies, and emphasize the importance of medical treatment. Meeting programs vary from guest speakers to DVD presentations and open group discussion. Lupus is an unpredictable and misunderstood autoimmune disease that ravages different parts of the body. It is difficult to diagnose, hard to live with and a challenge to treat. Lupus is a cruel mystery because it is hidden from view and undefined, has a range of symptoms, hits out of nowhere and has no known cause and no known cure. Its health effects can range from a skin rash to a heart attack. Lupus is debilitating and destructive, and can be fatal, yet research on lupus remains underfunded relative to its scope and devastation. An estimated 45,000 North Carolina residents and 1.5 million Americans are estimated to have a form of lupus.