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Ann Rheum Dis. 1989 Jun;48(6):461-3.

Prevalence and expression of photosensitivity in systemic lupus erythematosus.

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Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, California.


Photosensitivity was assessed in 125 patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and in 281 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) as controls. Photosensitivity was reported by 87/119 (73%) patients with SLE and in 62/269 (23%) patients with RA; involving the face in 72/122 (59%) patients with SLE, then arms, chest, and neck. Patients with SLE reported that sun exposure could exacerbate various systemic symptoms, 51/121 (42%) reported medical treatment for photosensitivity and 41/118 (35%) reported that photosensitivity had a significant impact on their lifestyle. There was no significant difference in disease severity, as judged by physician or laboratory results, between patients scoring high or low on the photosensitivity scale.

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