Pulmonary involvement of systemic lupus erythematosus in Libyan patients

Original article


Basma El-habbash, Khalid El-Muntaser, Rajab Tarsin

Rheumatology Dept., Tripoli Medical Centre, Tripoli, Libya

JMJ Vol. 5, No 2 (Summer) 2006: 116-119


Background: S.L.E is a multisystem collagen vascular disease characterized by widespread inflammatory changes particularly in vessels, Serosa and skin. Pulmonary involvement is common in S.L.E. Study objective: 1- To study the frequency and types of pulmonary involvement in S.L.E Patients.2- Does SLE cause significant or life threatening pulmonary disease? Materials and Methods: 60 Libyan patients (59 female, 1 male) mean age of 25.2 years, all Fulfilled the revised A.C.R criteria 1997 for SLE, who presented to Rheumatology Unit and O.P.D in Tripoli Medical Centre in the period between 9/2001- 6/2002 were studied. All patients had history; clinical examination, chest X-ray, pulmonary function test and C.T. scan of the chest. Patients with C.R.F, nephrotic syndrome, C.H.F and patient with any primary pulmonary disease were excluded. Results: 43 patients (72%) had pulmonary manifestation, out of them, 26 patients (43%) had pulmonary symptoms (cough, dyspnoea and chest pain), 11 patients (18%) had pulmonary signs (decreased air entry, bilateral basal crackles and pleural rub). 9 patients (15%) had CXR abnormalities, 11 patients (18%) had C.T scan finding (pleural thickening, pleural effusion and pulmonary fibrosis). 37 patients (62%) had changes in pulmonary function test (30 patients (50%) had restrictive ventilatory defects and 7 patients (12%) had obstructive ventilatory defects). We considered only objective finding (i.e. clinical signs, CXR, P.F.T or C.T Scan of chest) as a manifestation of pulmonary involvement, on this base, only 12 patients (20%) had pulmonary involvement (8 patients (13.3%) had pleural involvement and 5 patients (8.3%) had interstitial pulmonary fibrosis). conclusion: 20% of our Libyan S.L.E patients had pulmonary involvement. Life threatening conditions except fibrosing alveolitis were not observed.

Keywords: Systemic lupus erythematosus, American college of Rheumatology, Chronic renal failure, Congestive heart failure

Link/DOI: http://www.jmj.org.ly/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=1134