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[ISDH]Put On Purple To Raise Lupus Awareness
Start Date: 5/8/2014Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 5/8/2014
Entry Description

INDIANAPOLIS—Lupus is a mysterious disease, often difficult to diagnose, hard to live with and a challenge to treat. It is hidden from view because those living with it often times may not look sick; however, it is more pervasive than many may realize. Put on Purple Day in Indianapolis hopes to change that.


Friday, May 9, 2014 is “Put on Purple Day,” a time to raise lupus awareness. The event, sponsored by the Indiana State Department of Health, the Lupus Foundation of America-Indiana Chapter, and GlaxoSmithKline will be from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Robert D. Orr Plaza on the west lawn of the Indiana State House in downtown Indianapolis.


The event will have several guest speakers beginning at 12:15 p.m. First Lady Karen Pence will read a proclamation from Governor Pence declaring May as Lupus Awareness Month in Indiana. Other speakers include:

·         Secretary of State Connie Lawson

·         State Health Commissioner William C. VanNess, M.D.

·         Marion County Health Department Director Virginia Caine, M.D.

·         Sarah Gorman, Author & Lupus Patient

·         Jan Ferris, CEO, Lupus Foundation-Indiana Chapter


The Lupus Tour Bus will be parked nearby for Hoosiers to enter and get interactive information on lupus. Visitors are encouraged to “help solve the cruel mystery of lupus.” Several food trucks will also be onsite and will donate 15 percent of the days’ proceeds to the Lupus Foundation of America-Indiana Chapter.


Visitors are encouraged to use the hashtag #POP4lupus to Tweet photos and information from the event to help raise awareness.


“Lupus is a disease that might fall through the cracks to the average Hoosier,” said Dr. VanNess. “I invite all Hoosiers in the area to come to the event, wear purple and help raise awareness this serious and potentially deadly disease.”


There are four types of lupus. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) is the most common and most serious form. SLE is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system produces antibodies to cells within the body leading to widespread inflammation and tissue damage. The causes of each of the four types of lupus are unknown but could be linked to genetic, environmental and hormonal factors.


Lupus may be characterized by periods of illness and remissions and has a variety of clinical manifestations and can affect joints, skin, brain, lungs, kidneys and blood vessels. People with lupus may experience fatigue, pain or swelling in joints, skin rashes and fevers.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, lupus prevalence estimates vary widely, and range as high as 1.5 million people afflicted in the U.S. According to the Lupus Foundation of America, it’s estimated that 36,000 Hoosiers have lupus. Although men can get lupus, it disproportionately impacts women—especially minority women. 


“Almost everyone knows someone with lupus, yet no one knows much about it,” said Jan Ferris, CEO, Lupus Foundation-Indiana Chapter. “We need to change that.”

Visit the Indiana State Department of Health at, for important health and safety information, or follow us on Twitter at @StateHealthIN and on Facebook at





Contact Information:
Name: Ken Severson
Phone: 317.233.7104
Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Announcements
  • Category:
  • Family & Health
  • Agency Name
    Health, Indiana State Department of

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