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02-06-2022 | EULAR 2022 | Conference coverage | News

News in brief

Mortality risk may be ‘slightly increased’ in women with polymyalgia rheumatica

Author: Claire Barnard


medwireNews: Women with polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) may have a small increase in the risk for mortality relative to the general population, but not during the first 20 years after diagnosis, according to research presented at the EULAR 2022 Congress in Copenhagen, Denmark.

In their prospective study, which followed up 296 patients with PMR (68% women) from diagnosis until death or December 2021 (average follow-up 14 years), the investigators found that overall mortality risk in this cohort was not significantly higher than that in the Norwegian general population, with a standardized mortality ratio (SMR) of 1.05.

However, Stig Tengesdal (Diakonhjemmet Hospital, Oslo, Norway) said that when patients were categorized by sex, mortality risk was “slightly increased” among women in the PMR cohort (SMR=1.14, 95% confidence intervals 0.99–1.31), albeit without reaching statistical significance. This association was not seen among men (SMR=0.91).

Analysis of SMRs according to time since diagnosis revealed that women with PMR did not have an increased mortality risk during the first 2 decades of PMR, but “there was a tendency to increasing SMR” after 20–25 years’ disease duration, remarked the presenter.

He also noted a nonsignificant trend toward increased mortality risk among both men and women who were diagnosed with PMR before 60 years of age.

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EULAR 2022; Copenhagen, Denmark: 1–4 June
Ann Rheum Dis 2022; 81: 121