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Men with SLE at increased risk of coronary artery calcifications

05 Jun 2018
Stem cells have been found to be responsible for calcification in arteries of patients with chronic kidney disease

Men with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) are more likely to develop coronary artery calcifications (CAC) than age- and sex-matched controls, a recent study has shown. Such risk among patients with SLE is associated with older age, increasing chronic damage and cumulative dose of corticosteroids.

CAC occurred more frequently in patients with SLE than in controls (18 percent vs 7 percent; odds ratio [OR], 2.89; 95 percent CI, 1.07–8.65). The following factors independently correlated with the presence of calcifications: age (OR, 1.12; 1.04–1.20), SLE diagnosis (OR, 3.38; 1.07–10.64), diabetes mellitus (OR, 6.88; 1.50–31.62), Framingham risk score (OR, 1.12; 1.00–1.23) and glomerular filtration rate (OR, 0.98; 0.96–1.00).

Patients with SLE presented with CAC starting at age 32 years, within 2.3 years of diagnosis. The following were independent risk factors for CAC: increasing age (OR, 1.18; 1.06–1.31), Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics score (OR, 2.85; 1.21–6.73) and cumulative dose of prednisone (OR, 1.04; 1.01–1.08).

To determine whether the prevalence and extent of asymptomatic coronary artery atherosclerosis were increased in men with SLE vs controls, the investigators used multidetector computed tomography to screen 95 patients with SLE (mean age 34.7 years) and 100 control participants (mean age 34.8 years) with no history of coronary artery disease for CAC. The Agatston score was used to measure the extent of calcification.

The investigators compared the frequency of risk factors between patients and controls, and examined the relationship between clinical and immunological characteristics and the presence of CAC.

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Most Read Articles
Jairia Dela Cruz, 18 Dec 2018
The use of ixekizumab to selectively target interleukin-17A (IL-17A) in disease-modifying antirheumatic drug-naïve patients with ankylosing spondylitis yields improvements in disease activity, health-related quality of life, day-to-day physical activity, and bone marrow oedema of the spine and sacroiliac joint, according to the results of the phase III COAST-V study.
10 Jan 2019
Only a few sonographic enthesitis scoring instruments developed for spondyloarthritis (SpA) have been validated in psoriatic arthritis (PsA), and none of them passed the Outcome Measures in Rheumatology (OMERACT) filter in patients with PsA, according to a systematic review.