Fever is often a part of lupus. For some people with lupus,
an intermittent (coming and going) or continuous low-grade fever may be normal.
Other people, especially those on large doses of aspirin, nonsteroidal
anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), or corticosteroids, may not have fever at all
because these drugs may mask a fever.
If you have lupus, you may be more vulnerable to certain
infections than are other people without lupus. In addition, you may be more
prone to infection if you are taking any immunosuppressive drugs for your
lupus. Be alert to a temperature that is new or higher than normal for you,
because it could be a sign of a developing infection or a lupus flare.
Lupus is a difficult disease to diagnose because its symptoms can be vague. And unlike some other diseases, it cannot be diagnosed with a single lab test. However, when certain clinical criteria are met, lab tests can help confirm a diagnosis of lupus. Blood work and other tests can also help monitor the disease and show the effects of treatment.
WebMD takes a look at the uses and limitations of the tests that are commonly used to diagnose and monitor lupus.
Take your temperature at least once a day (or more often if needed) to
determine what a "normal" temperature is for you.
Take your temperature and watch for a fever any time you feel chills or do
not feel well.
Call your doctor immediately if you have a new or higher-than-normal
Even if you don't have a fever, don't hesitate to call your doctor if you
do not feel well in any way, particularly if you are taking aspirin, NSAIDs, or
a corticosteroid. Signs of infection other than a fever include unusual pain,
cramping or swelling, a headache with neck stiffness, cold or flu symptoms,
trouble breathing, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or changes in urine or
"The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin
Diseases of The National Institutes of Health. Fever and Lupus. Last revised,
January 26, 1999. (Online)