Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker proclaims May as Lupus Awareness Month

Proclamation inspires thousands in the lupus community to celebrates Lupus Awareness Month.
CHICAGO - May 3, 2021 - PRLog -- On April 23, 2021, Governor JB Pritzker signed the May is Lupus Awareness Month Proclamation inspiring thousands in Illinois' lupus community.

Research has shown that most Americans know little or nothing about lupus and its devastating impact. An estimated 65,000 Illinois residents live with lupus and thousands more support Illinoisans living with this often devastating disease.

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that often mimics other diseases resulting in late diagnosis.  Lupus can be difficult to diagnose because symptoms can be wide-ranging and happen over long periods of time. The body essentially begins attacking healthy cells and does not discriminate; the brain, skin, lungs, and kidneys – all parts of the body can be at risk. Ninety percent of people with lupus are women, however, anyone at any age can develop the disease.

"Governor Pritzker's proclamation has inspired the lupus community," said Mary Dollear, President of the Lupus Society of Illinois, the organization requesting the proclamation.  "By highlighting Lupus Awareness Month, the lupus community is even more committed to increasing awareness and educating our communities about lupus."

"Many people don't understand how serious lupus is because we don't look sick," says Kay Mimms of Matteson, IL.  "My diagnosis almost came too late."

Mimms, author of the book "Fighting Lupus Battles: Hope for a Cure" about lupus, suffered for years with joint pain, swollen muscles, and chest pain until age 59 when she was diagnosed with lupus.  Right after her diagnosis, Kay was in intensive care for 65 days followed by months of physical, occupational, and speech therapy before finding a "new normal" with her lupus diagnosis.

"Kay's story is not unique – many people suffer with lupus for years before getting a proper diagnosis," said Dollear.  "This May, with help from Governor Pritzker's proclamation, we are hoping to increase awareness about lupus and make that diagnosis time shorter."

Among LSI's suggested awareness opportunities this Lupus Awareness Month are:
  • Participate in the Virtual run Walk ride for Lupus (click ( for more)
  • Change your Facebook status to "LUPUS AWARENESS!"
  • Hang a Lupus Awareness poster ( in your front window or at your workstation!
  • Hand out Lupus Awareness Month stickers ( to everyone you see!
  • Share a lupus fact a day on social media!  
  • Take an "I fight for lupus because" ( selfie!
The public can learn more about lupus and ways they can get involved in improving awareness of lupus this May by visiting the LSI's Web site at  Tools, free of charge, are available at click here (

About the Lupus Society of Illinois

LSI promotes lupus awareness and complements the work of health care professionals by providing personalized resources for the lupus community while supporting research. We support research and conduct education programs so everyone affected by lupus can have an improved quality of life; provide information to ensure people with lupus and their families get answers and health professionals know about new means to diagnose and manage the disease; and conduct activities to increase awareness of lupus, rally public support for those who are affected by lupus, and advocate on their behalf.

Contact the LSI for more information at or call (312) 542-0002. Follow us on Facebook ((20+) Lupus Society of Illinois | Facebook (, Twitter (Lupus Society of IL (@LupusIL) / Twitter (

Mary Dollear
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Page Updated Last on: May 03, 2021
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