Subclinical Carotid Atherosclerosis in a Patient with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Deborah Alpert; Adrienne Davis; Doruk Erkan; Mary J Roman; Jane E Salmon

Disclosures

Nat Clin Pract Rheumatol. 2007;3(8):473-478. 

In This Article

Conclusions

Premature atherosclerosis is an important problem in patients with SLE, and it contributes to substantial morbidity and mortality. In addition to traditional risk factors, SLE-related factors, including disease activity, duration, damage, and treatment, are emerging as noteworthy contributors to the atherosclerotic process. Numerous non-invasive techniques that aim to assess the presence of subclinical atherosclerosis in patients with SLE have been studied, but their role as screening tools in clinical practice remains to be clarified. It is essential that treating physicians are continuously vigilant for both traditional and disease-related atherosclerotic risk factors in patients with SLE. Individualized management of modifiable risk factors, as well as control of disease activity using hydroxychloroquine and disease-modifying agents, should be optimized. Although evidence-based recommendations for the assessment and treatment of subclinical atherosclerosis in patients with SLE are currently lacking, data from ongoing prospective SLE registries and trials are likely to provide guidance in the near future.


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