Clinical picture of lupus nephritis in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE): Results of a large survey

Document Type: Original Article

Authors

Rheumatology Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Iran

Abstract

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic multisystem disorder. Lupus nephritis (LN) is a common serious complication of SLE. LN needs prolonged care and complex therapeutic modalities. This study assessed the characteristics of Persian SLE patients with LN (LN subgroup) and an SLE subpopulation without LN (non-LN subgroup). Furthermore, the association of LN with extrarenal manifestations of SLE was studied. This study assessed 2355 SLE patients from the electronic database of the Rheumatology Research Center (RRC), Tehran University of Medical Sciences (TUMS). The clinical and laboratory data of enrolled patients was retrieved. The chi-square test was used to compare extrarenal manifestations of the LN and non-LN subgroups. Odds ratios (OR) were used to present the strength of associations. The LN subgroup included 1604 cases (68.1%) with a mean age at SLE onset of 24.6±12.5 years and a female-to-male ratio of 8.7/1. Class IV nephritis was the most common type of LN (53.1%). The comparison of extrarenal manifestations revealed statistically significant differences between LN and non-LN subgroups. Major organ involvement including cardiopulmonary, hematologic, musculoskeletal and neuropsychiatric features was significantly more common in LN patients. On the contrary, discoid rash was significantly more common in the non-LN subgroup. This study revealed that LN is positively associated with musculoskeletal, mucocutaneous, and neuropsychiatric features of SLE.

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