Pollutants linked to disease activity in childhood-onset lupus patients



Exposure to inhaled pollutants may increase the risk of disease activity in patients with childhood-onset systemic lupus erythematosus (C-SLE), reported Dr. Elizabeth C. Fernandes and coauthors in the rheumatology unit of the children’s institute at Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade, Sao Paulo, Brazil.

A longitudinal study of childhood-onset systemic lupus erythematosus (C-SLE) patients found that inhaled particulate matter, nitrogen dioxide, and carbon monoxide were risk factors for a score of greater than 8 on the SLE Disease Activity Index 2000 at 2 weeks after exposure. The risk of C-SLE activity was increased by 79% (95% confidence interval, 9.0-192.0) on days with particulate matter levels above the World Health Organization air quality standard of 50 mcg/m3 when compared with days in which the levels were below the standard, the investigators reported.

They said that the study is limited by measurements from fixed stations that do not reflect individual exposure variation and the lack of individual data on potential confounders. Also, the possibility that the results could be attributed to another factor with a periodicity similar to the effect seen in the study cannot be completely excluded.

Read the full article in Arthritis Care & Research (doi:10.1002/acr.22603).

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