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Ann Intern Med. 1993 Apr 15;118(8):602-9.

Early undifferentiated connective tissue disease: III. Outcome and prognostic indicators in early scleroderma (systemic sclerosis).

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1
Cooperative Systematic Studies of the Rheumatic Diseases Program, University of Utah, Salt Lake City.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To characterize the course of early scleroderma and to delineate prognostic factors present within 1 year of disease onset that might identify patients at high risk.

DESIGN:

Inception cohort study.

SETTING:

Ten university-based rheumatology clinics participating in the Cooperative Systematic Studies of Rheumatic Diseases Program.

PATIENTS:

Forty-eight patients who had had scleroderma for less than 1 year.

MEASUREMENTS:

Fifteen patients with early scleroderma who died were compared with those still living during the initial study period (1982 to 1992). Kaplan-Meier survival estimation and Cox proportional hazards analysis were used to analyze baseline variables for their ability to predict survival duration.

RESULTS:

Eight of 15 deaths were due to cardiac or pulmonary system failure. The estimated 5-year survival rate was 68%. Baseline factors that were the most predictive of a poor outcome included the presence of abnormal cardiopulmonary signs and abnormal urine sediment (pyuria, hematuria).

CONCLUSION:

Evidence of early cardiopulmonary disease, renal disease, inflammation, or immune activation may identify a subset of patients with scleroderma who will experience rapidly progressive disease and early death.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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