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Respirology. 2007 May;12(3):355-60.

Sarcoidosis in Singapore: epidemiology, clinical presentation and ethnic differences.

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1
Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, Singapore General Hospital, Singapore. anantham.devanand@singhealth.com.sg

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES:

The aim of this study is to better understand the epidemiological and clinical features of patients with sarcoidosis in Singapore and to ascertain if ethnic differences exist.

METHODS:

A review of hospital medical records from June 1998 to May 2004 to identify patients with sarcoidosis.

RESULTS:

There were 59 patients with sarcoidosis identified (19 Chinese, 29 Asian Indian and 11 Malay). The estimated annual incidence of sarcoidosis in Singapore was 0.56 per 100,000. There was a significant difference between the observed and expected disease frequency in Chinese (32.2% vs 78.7%) and Indians (49.2% vs 6.0%, P < 0.005). A bimodal distribution of age at diagnosis was seen with peaks in the 30-39 years and 50-59 years age groups; 38.9% of cases were over the age of 50. Chinese patients were more likely to be asymptomatic (57.9%, P = 0.015) and less likely to have impaired spirometry (P = 0.013). Pulmonary sarcoid presented largely as stage 0 or stage 1 disease (74.4%). Overall mean spirometry was unimpaired and prognosis was good with 79.2% showing no radiological deterioration. There were no significant differences in organ involvement or treatment between ethnic groups.

CONCLUSION:

Sarcoidosis in Singapore is rare and the incidence differs between ethnic groups. Chinese appear to have a lower incidence and a less symptomatic presentation; Indians have a higher incidence and poorer clinical course.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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