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Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a heterogeneous, multisystem disease. SLE manifests in a unique way in each patient, and treatment should be tailored to the type and severity of organ system involvement (Table 22–1). Unfortunately, this is more easily said than done, because there are few large studies to guide decision-making. The lack of large scale, randomized controlled trials has resulted in therapeutic strategies that are largely empiric. Despite these limitations, well-accepted community standards exist and are helpful in guiding treatment. In the end, the patient and his or her physician must weigh the potential risks and benefits of a particular therapy and agree upon a course of action.

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Table 22–1. Commonly Used Medications in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE).

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