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Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken). 2013 Apr;65(4):601-6. doi: 10.1002/acr.21846.

Increased risk of subarachnoid hemorrhage in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus: a nationwide population-based study.

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1
Shuang Ho Hospital, Taipei Medical University, New Taipei City, and National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

A relatively common occurrence of spontaneous subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) has been noted; however, the subsequent studies were conflicting. This nationwide population-based study aimed to evaluate the risk of SAH in patients with SLE.

METHODS:

We identified 16,967 SLE patients from the Taiwan National Health Insurance (NHI) database between 2000 and 2006, and compared the incidence rate of SAH with 16,967 randomly selected age- and sex-matched non-SLE subjects. A Cox multivariable proportional hazards model was used to evaluate the risk factors of SAH in the SLE cohort.

RESULTS:

The SLE cohort had a higher risk of SAH, with an incidence rate ratio of 4.84 (P < 0.001). Despite a younger age, the mortality rate after SAH was significantly higher in the SLE cohort compared to all of the non-SLE SAH patients identified from the 1 million NHI beneficiaries (60.0% versus 38.9%; P = 0.007). Age (hazard ratio [HR] 1.03, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 1.01-1.05), platelet transfusion (HR 2.75, 95% CI 1.46-5.17), red blood cell transfusion (HR 7.11, 95% CI 2.81-17.97), and a mean daily steroid dose >10 mg of prednisolone or equivalent (HR 4.36, 95% CI 2.19-8.68) were independent risk factors for the new onset of SAH.

CONCLUSION:

This study demonstrated that SAH is a rare but associated complication of SLE with a high mortality rate. Other than age, higher mean daily steroid use and a history of platelet or red blood cell transfusion were associated with the occurrence of SAH in patients with SLE.

PMID:
22965820
DOI:
10.1002/acr.21846
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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