Comprehensive Methods Work to Determine SLE Incidence and Prevalence

Female dr talking to patient
Female dr talking to patient
Research confirmed the increased burden of SLE in black, Asian, and Hispanic women compared with white women.

The California Lupus Surveillance Project (CLSP), conducted under the authority of the California Department of Public Health, confirmed the burden of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) in minority populations, according to a study published in Arthritis & Rheumatology.

Authors of the CLSP, a population-based registry of individuals with SLE residing in San Francisco County, worked in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to determine contemporary, population-based estimates of SLE occurrence in San Francisco County between 2007 and 2009. The 3 primary sources of SLE cases were community rheumatology and nephrology clinics, community hospitals, and integrated health systems.

The investigators abstracted medical records to ascertain SLE cases and then estimated crude and age-standardized incidence and prevalence stratified by sex and race/ethnicity. Four trained researchers abstracted medical claims charts for each potential SLE patient who achieved the catchment criteria.

Results showed that the overall age-standardized annual incidence rate for SLE was 4.6 per 100,000 person-years. In women, the age-standardization rate was 8.6 compared with 0.7 per 100,000 person-years for men. The incident rate was highest in black women (30.5), followed by Hispanic women (8.9), Asian women (7.2), and white women (5.3).

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“The CLSP confirmed the increased burden of SLE in black, Asian, and Hispanic women compared to white women,” the authors concluded. “Future studies will be necessary to broaden our understanding of the underlying etiologies for this disparity.”

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Dall’Era M, Cisternas MG, Snipes K, Herrinton LJ, Gordon C, Helmick CG. The incidence and prevalence of systematic lupus erythematosus in San Francisco County, California [published online September 10, 2017]. Arthritis Rheumatol. doi 10.1002/art 40191