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Lupus. 2003;12(10):788-94.

Rate, pattern and factors related to damage in Brazilian systemic lupus erythematosus patients.

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  • 1Internal Medicine Department, University Hospital Clementino Fraga Filho, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


The Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics/American College of Rheumatology (ACR) Damage Index (SDI) is an accepted instrument to ascertain damage. It has been shown to vary among different SLE populations. The aim of this study was to assess SDI score, pattern and factors related to damage in Brazilian SLE outpatients. The SDI was obtained in 105 patients with a median age of 41 (5-95%, 19-61.7) years and a median SLE duration of 127 (17.6-345.9) months. Patients had a median SDI of 2 (0-8) and 81.9% had some damage (SDI > 0). Damage was associated with a higher number of ACR criteria for SLE in multivariate analysis (OR = 2.32, 95%CI = 1.23-4.37, P = 0.009). Antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) (OR = 9.82, 95%CI = 2.74-35.23, P < 0.001), methylprednisolone pulses (OR = 3.91, 95%CI = 1.19-12.81, P = 0.024), age (OR = 1.70, 95%CI = 1.02-1.13, P = 0.011) and prednisone use duration (OR = 1.01, 95%CI = 1.002-1.02, P = 0.020) were related to severe damage (SDI > or = 4). Hypertension was associated with renal, cardiac and atherosclerotic damage, as cyclophosphamide pulses were with premature menopause. In conclusion, damage was very frequent in Brazilian SLE patients, mainly due to skin involvement, compared to other SLE populations. The presence of APS was the major independent contributor to the development of severe damage. Arterial hypertension was identified as a common risk factor for renal, cardiac and atherosclerotic damage.

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