Background Neuropsychiatric manifestations in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), termed neuropsychiatric SLE (NPSLE), involve a wide variety of neurological and psychiatric manifestations with a complex approach. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of mental disorders and neuropsychiatric involvement in a group of patients with SLE and to examine the relationship with other clinical manifestations.
Methods A single center, retrospective, case control study was including patients 18 years and older diagnosed with SLE in a tertiary hospital. Clinical and demographical variables were collected. NPSLE was defined by classification criteria, and others minor nonspecific NPSLE manifestations (depression, anxiety, dizziness) were collected. Statistical analysis was carried out using R software.
Results From a total of 66 patients 24.2% (16 patients) had at least one mental disorder or neuropsychiatric manifestation. The most frequently reported was depression (n=7, 43.8%), dizziness (n=5; 31,2%); headache (n=4; 25%); insomnia (n=2; 12.5%) and cognitive impairment (n=2; 12.5%). Brain MRI nonspecific findings were reported in 2 patients (12.5%). ANA was positive in all cases. The prevalence of anti-Rib-P was very low, only present in one patient (1.5%). 8 patients (12.1%) had secondary antiphospholipid syndrome (APS). Associations with APS, other manifestations or corticosteroid use were not statistically significant.
Conclusions There is a low prevalence of severe neuropsychiatric syndromes in our cohort. Almost 1/4 of our cohort had at least one mental disorder or neuropsychiatric manifestation, the most frequently reported was depression.
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