IMAJ | volume 25
Journal 3, March 2023
1 Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel
2 Rheumatic Diseases Unit, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel
3 Clinical Research Center, Soroka University Medical Center, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel
4 Department of Rheumatology, Rabin Medical Center (Beilinson Campus), Petah Tikva, Israel
5 Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel
Epidemiological studies have shown a connection between ethnic origin and the incidence and outcome of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).
To evaluate the SLE outcomes among Ashkenazi Jews, non-Ashkenazi Jews, and Arabs.
We conducted a retrospective study of patients who were diagnosed with SLE and followed in lupus clinics at two large tertiary medical centers. The data were obtained from patient medical records. Patients were stratified into three ethnic origins: Ashkenazi Jews, non-Ashkenazi Jews, and Arabs. The primary outcomes were all-cause mortality, development of end-stage kidney disease (ESKD), and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Disease Activity Index (SLEDAI) 2K ≤ 4 at last visit.
We included 570 patients in this study. The Arab group showed the highest number of SLE classification criteria at diagnosis and last encounters compared to non-Ashkenazi and Ashkenazi Jewish groups (6.0 vs. 5.0 and 4.0, respectively at diagnosis, P
< 0.001; 8.0 vs. 7.0 and 6.0 at last visit, P
= 0.01). In multivariate models, Arab patients had three times higher risk of all-cause mortality than Ashkenazi Jews (hazard ratio 2.99, 95% confidence interval [95%CI] 1.32–6.76, P
= 0.009). ESKD was similar among the study groups. Low disease activity (SLEDAI 2K ≤ 4) at last visit was lower in the Arab group than the Ashkenazi Jews (odds ratio 0.50, 95%CI 0.28–0.87, P
= 0.016), depicting a medium-to-high disease activity among the former.
Physicians should consider the influence of the ethnicity of the SLE patient when deciding on their care plan.