How common is avascular necrosis (AVN) in patients with 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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Answer

Another important consideration is the increased prevalence of avascular necrosis (AVN) in the SLE population relative to healthy individuals. It may be due to SLE pathogenesis and/or concomitant heavy steroid use. [80] Asymptomatic AVN is seen in up to 44% of SLE patients in the first year of therapy with high-dose corticosteroids. The most commonly affected site is the femoral head. [80] Independent risk factors for AVN in patients with SLE include the use of glucocorticosteroid or cytotoxic agents and the presence of arthritis. [81]


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