Why the Plateau?
The question then leads to why? Why have these rates started to plateau instead of steadily increasing over time? The answer is not a complete one. One hypothesis is as SLE patients live longer, more damage is being done to their organs limiting overall survival. This theory has not been supported by any scientific study nor has it been tested. A Meta-Analysis involving 77 studies and over 18,998 SLE patients was used to synthesis results of many past studies over the last five decades. Findings from this analysis showed two factors that might be negatively contributing to this plateau: neuropsychiatric and renal damage. Neuropsychiatric damage negatively affected the 10-year survival rate and the prevalence of this damage has been on the rise. Early detection of neuropsychiatric and renal damage and aggressive management of both these factors may help aid in the overall survival rate.
How to help: While there is no evidence backed by science and research as to why the survival rate has plateaued over the years, there are simple ways to early detect this mysterious disease to prevent further damage and impact.