Using the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) and Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics (SLICC) criteria to determine the diagnosis of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) in patients with subacute cutaneous lupus erythematosus (SCLE)

Janice Tiao, Rui Feng, Kasey Carr, Joyce Okawa, Victoria P Werth
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 2016, 74 (5): 862-9

BACKGROUND: Approximately 50% of patients with subacute cutaneous lupus erythematosus (SCLE) meet criteria for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). The Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics (SLICC) developed new SLE criteria to improve the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) criteria but the SLICC criteria have not been evaluated in patients with SCLE.

OBJECTIVE: We sought to determine how patients with SCLE/SLE meet the ACR and SLICC criteria to compare the 2 sets of criteria.

METHODS: This was a retrospective analysis of 107 patients with SCLE enrolled in a database at the University of Pennsylvania.

RESULTS: Patients with SCLE/SLE were more likely than those with only SCLE to have oral ulcers, positive anti-double-stranded DNA antibodies, and positive antinuclear antibody test findings using both sets of criteria. Patients with SCLE/SLE were also more likely to have low complement using the SLICC criteria. There was a statistically insignificant increase in individuals meeting the SLICC criteria.

LIMITATIONS: Not all patients received comprehensive laboratory testing.

CONCLUSIONS: Most patients with SCLE who formally meet criteria for SLE do so based on the laboratory and mucocutaneous criteria. Neither the ACR nor SLICC criteria distinguish patients with SCLE and major internal disease from patients with SCLE without major internal disease.

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