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Clinical features and outcomes of anti-glomerular basement membrane disease in older patients.

BACKGROUND: Anti-glomerular basement membrane (GBM) disease is being recognized increasingly in older patients. Disease presentation and outcomes of these patients are unclear.

STUDY DESIGN: Case series.

SETTING & PARTICIPANTS: 221 consecutive Chinese patients with anti-GBM disease diagnosed in 1998-2008 in our tertiary referral center. Anti-GBM disease was defined as positive anti-GBM antibodies in circulation and/or linear immunoglobulin G deposition along the GBM on kidney biopsy.

PREDICTOR: Older age, defined as 65 years or older, and antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody, detected using immunofluorescence and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, at presentation.

OUTCOMES: Clinical features, kidney pathologic characteristics, end-stage renal disease (ESRD), and mortality. Multivariate Cox proportional hazard models were used to assess the contribution of age, sex, clinical measures, and treatments to ESRD and mortality.

RESULTS: 50 of 221 (22.6%) patients were 65 years or older. Older patients had a male predominance (male/female ratio, 1.9:1). They had a higher proportion of positive antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody results (46.0% vs 14.6%; P < 0.001), lower prevalence of hemoptysis (26.0% vs 46.2%; P = 0.01), lower urine protein excretion (1.4 ± 1.0 vs 3.9 ± 3.3 g/d; P = 0.001), and higher estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) at presentation (8.4 vs 5.1 mL/min/1.73 m(2); P = 0.007) compared with younger patients. During follow-up, 30 of 37 (81.1%) and 21 of 37 (56.8%) patients developed ESRD and died in the older group compared with 115 of 139 (82.7%) and 35 of 139 (25.2%) in the younger group (P = 0.1 and P = 0.001, respectively). For older patients, multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that higher initial eGFR was an independent predictor for both ESRD (HR, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.78-0.96; P = 0.005) and death (HR, 0.79; 95% CI, 0.66-0.94; P = 0.008).

LIMITATIONS: Not all patients underwent kidney biopsy, especially those with very old age or ESRD at presentation.

CONCLUSIONS: Older patients with anti-GBM disease had milder kidney damage and less pulmonary involvement. Outcomes were predicted by initial eGFR. Thus, early diagnosis was crucial to improve outcomes.

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