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Vascular Presentation and Outcomes of Patients With Giant Cell Arteritis and Isolated Symptomatic Limb Involvement

Abstract : Objective The aims of this study were to describe and assess the vascular outcomes of patients with giant cell arteritis (GCA) presenting with only symptomatic isolated limb involvement (LI-GCA). Methods We recruited patients from 5 tertiary centers who were diagnosed with GCA based on histology or vasculitis demonstration on imaging and who presented with isolated symptomatic limb involvement at diagnosis. For each included patient, we randomly selected 3 control patients who satisfied the 5 criteria from the American College of Rheumatology at diagnosis. Results We included 27 LI-GCA patients and 81 control patients. Compared with the controls, the patients with LI-GCA were younger (p= 0.005), exhibited a more delayed diagnosis (p= 0.006), and had lower C-reactive protein levels (p= 0.001), but they did not show more cardiovascular risk factors. Glucocorticoid use (starting and tapering doses) and relapse rates did not differ in the 2 groups, but the patients with LI-GCA received longer treatment (p= 0.02). Cardiovascular complications occurred in 67% of the patients with LI-GCA versus 21% of the control patients (p< 0.0001), especially ischemic events (p< 0.0001) including stroke (p= 0.03) and myocardial infarction (p= 0.01). Vascular surgery was required in 44% of the patients with LI-GCA versus 2% of the controls (p< 0.0001). Excluding vascular surgery, the cumulative incidence of cardiovascular complications was higher in the patients with LI-GCA (log-rank test:p< 0.0001) than in the controls (hazard ratio, 5.73; 95% confidence interval, 2.94-11.28;p< 0.0001). Conclusions Compared with the typical cranial form of GCA, LI-GCA has a worse cardiovascular-related prognosis. Further studies are required to determine the best management of these patients.
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Submitted on : Friday, May 14, 2021 - 3:37:14 PM
Last modification on : Friday, August 5, 2022 - 12:00:26 PM



Hubert de Boysson, Olivier Espitia, Eric Liozon, Aurélie Daumas, Mathieu Vautier, et al.. Vascular Presentation and Outcomes of Patients With Giant Cell Arteritis and Isolated Symptomatic Limb Involvement. JCR: Journal of Clinical Rheumatology, 2020, 26 (6), pp.248-254. ⟨10.1097/RHU.0000000000001051⟩. ⟨hal-03226447⟩



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