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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Jersey Shore University Medical Center, 1945 Route 33, Neptune, NJ 07754, USA. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nat Clin Pract Rheumatol. 2007;3(8):473-478. © 2007 Nature Publishing Group
Written consent was obtained from this patient to participate in the Hospital for Special Surgery Autoimmune Disease Registry and Accelerated Atherosclerosis in SLE study. Both these protocols were approved by the Hospital for Special Surgery Institutional Review Board.
Cite this: Subclinical Carotid Atherosclerosis in a Patient with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus - Medscape - May 18, 2007.