Lupus erythematosus (LE) is a complex spectrum of disease, involving one or multiple organ systems, and characterized by humoral and cellular autoimmunity, resulting in combinations of skin, joint, vascular and internal organ involvement. Skin disease occurs in the overwhelming majority of patients, and the patterns of skin involvement form an important part of subclassification, with localized discoid lupus usually being a single‐system manifestation, and acute cutaneous LE part of a potentially fatal multisystem disease. Intermediate forms, including subacute cutaneous LE are common and variable in their involvement of other organ systems. Ultraviolet exposure is an important disease precipitant. LE forms a major part of the group of disorders called connective tissue diseases, along with systemic sclerosis, localized and generalized morphoea, dermatomyositis, rheumatoid arthritis and Sjögren syndrome on the basis of clinical, pathological and immunological overlap.
Keywords lupus, systemic, discoid, autoimmunity, autoantibodies, multiorgan, antimalarial, interferon