(HealthDay News) – Patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) have an increased risk of cervical, but not trochanteric, hip fractures, according to a study published online April 16 in Arthritis Care & Research.

Shu-Hung Wang, MD, from the Taipei Veterans General Hospital in Taiwan, and colleagues used data from the Taiwan National Health Insurance database to examine the incidence rates and risk factors for cervical and trochanteric hip fractures among patients with SLE. Participants included 14,544 patients with SLE who were followed for a mean of six years. They were compared with age- and gender-matched counterparts without SLE.

The researchers found that there were 75 hip fractures among the patients with SLE, for an incidence rate of 8.6 per 10,000 person-years. Among patients with lupus, the incidence rate ratios for developing hip fracture were 3.17 for cervical hip fracture (P<0.001) and 1.11 for trochanteric hip fracture (P=0.571), compared with controls. The incidence rate ratios for hip fracture were 2.38 (P<0.001) and 1.06 (P=0.922) for females and males, respectively. Compared with controls with cervical hip fractures, patients with lupus and cervical hip fractures were significantly younger (56.7 vs. 67.8 years). Age, use of intravenous cyclophosphamide, higher doses of steroids, and stroke correlated with cervical hip fracture in multivariate analysis, while for trochanteric hip fracture, the only associated factor was age.

“Patients with SLE are associated with a higher risk for cervical but not trochanteric hip fracture and these two hip fractures have different risk factors,” the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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