Which patient groups in the US have the highest prevalence of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)?

Updated: Aug 04, 2021
  • Author: Christie M Bartels, MD, MS; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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The frequency of SLE varies by race and ethnicity, with higher rates reported in blacks and Hispanics. A study in the predominantly white population of Olmsted County, Minnesota found an age-adjusted prevalence of 30.5 per 100,000 population. [45] In a study of a racially diverse population in Michigan, the prevalence of SLE was 2.3-fold higher in blacks than in whites; in that study, the age-adjusted prevalence of lupus in blacks was 105.8 or 103 per 100,000 population, depending on whether the ACR or a rheumatologiist's definition of SLE was used. [48]

Registries have been established in San Francisco and New York City to provide annual prevalence estimates for Hispanics and Asians, [47] but a  2001 study found a prevalence of 100 per 100,000 Hispanics in Nogales, Arizona. [50]

In the Michigan study, the prevalence of SLE was 10-fold higher in females than in males and was over twice as high in black females as in white females, reaching 1 in 537 among black females. [49] SLE is also more frequent in Asian women than in white women. [50]

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