To determine the frequency and predictors of pulmonary hypertension in patients with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus in a Pakistani population, presenting at a tertiary care hospital.
This cross-sectional study was conducted at the Department of Rheumatology, Shiekh Zayed Hospital, Lahore from March to June 2018. A total of 97 patients, who fulfilled the Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) criteria of American College of Rheumatology (ACR) 1992 were enrolled. Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH) was measured by calculating pulmonary arterial systolic pressure through echocardiography by a single consultant cardiologist. Disease characteristics and demography was collected in a self-administered proforma. PAH was defined as mean pulmonary arterial pressure of 25mmHg or above by calculating with a formula. SPSS version 20 was used for analysis of data.
Out of 97 patients, 89.7% (n=87) were females and 10.3% (n=10) were males, with mean age of 31.29± 8.824 years. The mean disease duration was 24.21 ± 30.46 months. PAH was found in 23.3% (n=23) patients, including 19 females and 4 males. On further analysis of data, Raynaud phenomenon, rheumatoid factor and nephritis were assessed as predictors of PAH and all of these showed statistical significance for presence of PAH as per Chi-square test (p<0.05).
In this study, 23.3% SLE patients showed evidence of PAH and positive statistical significance was found between predictors like Raynaud phenomenon, rheumatoid factor, nephritis and presence of PAH. So it is imperative to detect PAH early and start prompt treatment to achieve better quality of life.