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Polymyalgia rheumatica and the risk of stroke: a three-year follow-up study.

Abstract

BACKGROUND
Polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) is a relatively common rheumatic disease, particularly in the elderly. Vasculitis is associated with PMR and theoretically makes such patients susceptible to vascular events such as stroke. This study aims to explore the frequency and risk of stroke among patients with PMR through a population-based case-controlled study.
METHODS
The study included 781 patients with PMR from the Taiwan Longitudinal Health Insurance Database between 2001 and 2005. We randomly extracted 3,905 other patients, matched with the study group in terms of sex and age, as a control population. Each subject was individually tracked for a three-year period to identify those who had strokes. Stratified Cox proportional hazard regression was employed to evaluate the risk of stroke, after adjusting for socio-demographic characteristics and comorbidities.
RESULTS
We found that 386 out of 4,686 sampled patients (8.24%) had stroke during the three-year follow-up period, including 113 patients with PMR (14.47% of the PMR group) and 273 controls (6.98% of the control group). The stratified Cox proportional hazard regression showed that the adjusted hazard ratio of stroke for patients with PMR was 2.09 times that of controls (95% CI = 1.63-2.66, p <0.001), after adjusting for socio-demographic characteristics and comorbidities.
CONCLUSIONS
PMR was associated with a significantly higher risk of stroke in the three-year follow-up period. Physicians should be aware of this potential association in clinical settings.

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  • Publisher Full Text
  • Authors

    Kang JH, Sheu JJ, Lin HC

    Institution

    Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, School of Medicine, College of Medicine, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan.

    Source

    Cerebrovascular diseases (Basel, Switzerland) 32:5 2011 pg 497-503

    MeSH

    Aged
    Asian Continental Ancestry Group
    Case-Control Studies
    Female
    Follow-Up Studies
    Humans
    Longitudinal Studies
    Male
    Middle Aged
    Polymyalgia Rheumatica
    Proportional Hazards Models
    Retrospective Studies
    Risk Factors
    Stroke
    Taiwan
    Vasculitis

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    22057203