Nick Cannon announces he has a “lupus-like” condition and we wish him our best, but what exactly does “lupus-like” mean?


Nick Cannon says he has a “lupus-like” condition according to many sources including people magazine. It does explain the recent health problems, but why cant stars ever come out and just say they have lupus. Why does it have to be “pre-lupus”, kinda -like-lupus, or borderline lupus? Is that like being half pregnant? I don’t mean to start a big old debate, by all means everyone deserves privacy if they choose. But if they “let the cat out of the bag” a little, then why not all the way?I just find it frustrating when someone with a certain level of “celebrity” has the ability to bring awareness and hope to so many, that they have to hide behind generic phrases that never really point to a true diagnosis. Last year this debate started when Lady Ga Ga used the term “borderline lupus”. nick cannon


By all means, I wish anyone dealing with any chronic auto immune condition the best. I know from the news stories that Nick’s condition is and was serious, and I can’t imagine adding to the situation being a new parent of twins.  I wish him the the best on his road to better health and a new understanding of his life as a celebrity with a chronic illness, and as a patient just like the rest of us.,,20575275,00.html

How do you guys feel about stars the past few years who kinda, sorta, have something like an auto immune disease? Comment below.

written by Christine Miserandino


  • guest

    ALL of you that THINK you have Lupus need to watch this documentary that received awards.

  • guest

    Nick Cannon has Lyme Disease. Lupus is one of the main things it is misdiagnosed as along with MS, ALS, Parkinson’s, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue and a host of other things. He needs to find a good Lyme doctor and he will get better.

  • First and foremost thank you so much for an AMAZING WEBSITE! I have sarcoidosis and it has touched my heart in many ways. Now back to the topic. Lupus like symptom could mean a lot of different things because a lot mimmick eachother and have very similar symptoms. One of them being what I have which is called sarcoidosis. Or yes it could very much be lupus itself. Who knows. People usually say things like that because they don’t want people to know what they have exactly or they are sooooo overwhelmed right now and are afraid. I also catch myself telling people that I have sarcoidosis and go on to explain it but still get a blank stare. But as soon as soon as I say it’s like lupus….then aha something clicks.
    So I first feel that celebrities DO have an upper hand to bring awareness to such a devastating diagnosis. But in a sense I can see them protecting that info because of the need to mantain work. As fear consumed us imagine the fear in them in the public eye, tabloids, new father, newly married to a Diva who’s also in the limelight, high lifestyle status to mantain and again being able to just maintain work. They know they are quickly and easily replaceable. And i’m sure the compition is fierce. Now, I really like him as a celebrity because he seems to be a down to earth kind of person. And yes even though we really don’t know them personally lol. But I’m hoping he can have his time and then eventually come out and be a voice.But in reality ONLY the strong ones “come out” Like Michael J Fox. And it took him some time to come out officially and say what he had too. Hopefully the same will be for Nick. We all went through the ups and downs, the “I can beat this”, “what am I going to do”, “what does this really mean”, “how is this going to affect me, my spouse, my kids” and “Is this going to kill me” moments. Also the whole friends and family issues of who will be there and provide the right support moments. I just think and hope that this is the process that he is going through. And hope he will make the choice to speak up for the rest of us who need a high profile person to bring awareness.
    Just like Tisha Cambell and Daisy Fuentes have sarcoidosis. But yet they choose to keep it on the down low. So part of me truly is frustrated but yet part of me tries to understand. I know I was all over the place but we definitely need a face to go with the illness. It would help us all in the end!

  • Team Elissa

    At the very least, a credible doctor would tell you that you have an autoimmune disease. If you didn’t meet the criteria for a lupus diagnosis, a responsible doctor wouldn’t say you have a “lupus-like” disease. There are many autoimmune diseases that share similar symptoms. And bloodwork may not reveal lupus but it always reveals inflammation which is a red flag for autoimmune disease. Diagnoses are made on much more than a simple blood test. Your symptoms and your doctor’s opinion are a huge factor in your diagnosis. The problem I have with the label “lupus-like” is that it’s misinformation. That’s exactly what the public DOESN’T need to hear, given the overwhelming lack of public knowledge in regard to lupus and its effects.

    -17 year lupus survivor

  • Team Elissa

    If you have 6 out of 11 major symptoms, you have lupus. The face rash doesn’t make or break a lupus diagnosis. There’s no such thing as a lupus-like disease. Either you have it or you don’t.

  • Joeymarie68

    My doctor told me I have a Lupus-like disease! Basically I have all the lupus symptoms except the face rash. So yes you can have lupus-like disease

  • Ruby makes a real good point here. This is certainly not a possibility that could be ruled out in cases like this, because lupus is quite difficult to diagnose in certain cases. Hopefully, he will be able to keep his condition well under control given his available resources.

  • Endsley Mcleod

    There are Lupus like forms. I have been diagnosed with one. It a huge long name that I can never remember. It has all the same symptoms and problems that come with it. It is a lot easier to say lupus like or just lupus. I had a skin test for lupus and it came back negative for the one test i have had. My insurance ended soon after due to turning 18 and having preexisting conditions. So i havent been able to do futher testing. I also have Fibromayalgia, Interstitial Cystits (bladder disease where the lining of the bladder is missing or not solid), kidney stones, & much more. Alot of my symptoms are so much alike it makes it hard to be diagnosed and know what is going on. I struggle on a daily basis. Im 19 years old & have dealt with this since i was 9.

    Just wanted to say that i do know “lupus like” diseases are real. There are just different forms. & scientific names for each one are hard to remember & pronounce

  • GossamerSails

    Many people show lupus-like symptoms and yet, lupus tests don’t always show it.  Either there are many more forms of lupus than we know about, or lupus tests haven’t been good enough to find it, or both.  Lupus, of course, changes its attack strategy frequently, so that makes it difficult to diagnose.

  • Ettina

    It could be simply that he has something similar to, but not quite, Lupus. I describe my father as having a condition ‘kind of like arthritis’ because he gets joint pain and swelling to the point of needing crutches at times (especially when the weather changes) but he’s been tested for arthritis and came up negative. Our best guess is he has some odd form of gout. But we can’t go into the whole history of what he’s been tested for and doesn’t have, so we just say he has a condition similar to arthritis because that’s something people will understand.

  • This is a really interesting article. In an effort to help spread
    awareness, I wanted to share this lupus infographic with you (it can be viewed at It was created two months ago
    in honor of National Lupus Awareness month, and I thought that you might find
    it interesting. Thanks!

  • YF1006

    Well, it isn’t necessarily you have it or you don’t.  My daughter has a lupus like disease.  This means that she doesn’t have fit the official criteria for Lupus but has many of the symptoms.  One of her labs still tests negative for Lupus, but other tests indicate she has something like Lupus.  It is likely that she will develop Lupus in the future, but right now medicine is keeping it from getting worse, so it is considered “Lupus like”. 
    So he may actually be letting the cat fully out of the bag, because it is possible to have a “lupus like disease”.

  • Fancypupjewelry

    It could be he is still in the diagnosis phase where the doctor suspects he has lupus or something similiar to lupus, but isn’t quite sure that lupus is in fact the disorder he has. I am in that same boat right now regarding psoriatic arthritis – my doctor thinks that is what I have, but has enough doubt that she isn’t ready to officially make a diagnosis yet. I also don’t think that a celebrity is under obligation to publically disclose their illness. They should have just as much privacy regarding medical problems as anyone else and they should be allowed to handle it any way they see fit.

  • I have to agree with the other commenters.  My first thoughts were that:
    1.  Perhaps he (and other celebs who announce “borderline” or “-like” syndromes/diseases) are in that stage of grieving that has them still denying that what they have is really “…”    And really we ALL know what that’s like!!
    2.  Perhaps their doc used those words with them.  Lots of medical professionals sugar-coat info to make it more palatable…  

    So let’s not immediately blame the victims here….  

    And… I don’t think that ANYONE (celeb or not) has an obligation to become a poster-child for a disorder, simply because it’s been diagnosed.  It’s wonderful when it happens… but it’s not part of the job description!

  • Annicsh3

    its not that they hide what they have sometimes doctors say lupus like because the tests results dont always show the disease right away. i myself have a lupus like disease and for three years my body has gotten worse but still no definitive answers!!!

  • singing patient

    since the general public doesn’t really know much about lupus, calling something “lupus-like” doesn’t tell them anything at all. that’s the issue i have with him using that label. If you are going to say something is “like” something else, it would be helpful if people knew anything at all about the “something else.” If I said an animal was “pterodactyl-like” and you had never seen a pterodactyl, that would not be helpful to you at all.

  • Toypoodler

    This is such an uninformed article………..Dear Christine!  You can test positive for auto immune, and you can have all the symptoms of lupus but not have it.  There is far more to diagnosing Lupus or other auto immune diseases besides the initial blood work for auto immune.  There are so many auto immune diseases with similar symptoms.  Get your facts please before you trash Nick, other celebrities and everyday people who are suffering with no firm answers on how to treat or get comfort.

  • It’s possible their dr.’s used the terminology because they’re still in a pre-diagnosis  state, due to not being able to rule everything else yet.  You know how these auto-immune diseases are, they rule out everything else, one test at a time, over about a years period, then they can tell you definitely whether it’s lupus, ms, als, etc..jmo

  • No wonder she’s been a narcotic user!  RSD is soo painful!