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Kristiansand, Norway

Hoff M.,St. Olavs Hospital | Hoff M.,Norwegian University of Science and Technology | Gulati A.M.,St. Olavs Hospital | Romundstad P.R.,Norwegian University of Science and Technology | And 3 more authors.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases | Year: 2015

Background: A wide range in the prevalence (<0.01-0.25%) and incidence (0.5-23.1/100 000) of psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is reported. The main objective of this study was to examine the prevalence and incidence of PsA in central Norway. Method: The patients were recruited from the Nord- Trøndelag Health Study 3, a population study carried out in 2006-2008. All 94 194 inhabitants aged >20 years were invited and 50 806 (54%) responded. The study consisted of a questionnaire (Q1) and a brief medical examination. Q1 included questions if the persons suffered from psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or ankylosing spondylitis (AS). Patients with self-reported psoriasis further answered a specific questionnaire on psoriasis including a questionnaire concerning PsA. In order to identify patients with PsA we used the following criteria: Persons reporting they had or may have PsA; persons answering that they had psoriasis and RA; and persons answering that they had psoriasis and AS. Using this approach, 1278 patients were identified. Hospital files were evaluated by a rheumatologist according to a predefined protocol to verify the diagnosis of PsA. Results: 338 patients, 144 men and 194 women, were verified to have PsA. The prevalence of PsA was 6.7 (95% CI 5.9 to 7.4) per 1000 inhabitants >20 years with no significant difference between men and women. In the 9-year period of 2000-2008, a total of 188 patients were diagnosed with PsA, which give an incidence rate of 41.3/100 000 (35.8-47.6). Conclusions: The prevalence of PsA in central Norway appears to be higher than previously reported. The reason for this is unknown and may include environmental factors, life style factors and genetic differences. © 2014, BMJ Publishing Group. All rights reserved.

Diamantopoulos A.P.,Hospital of Southern Norway Trust | Diamantopoulos A.P.,Norwegian University of Science and Technology | Larsen A.I.,University of Stavanger | Larsen A.I.,University of Bergen | Omdal R.,University of Stavanger
International Journal of Cardiology | Year: 2013

Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) blockers are widely used in the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases, especially chronic arthritis. Current guidelines advise against the use of such agents in patients who have a concomitant heart failure. Consequently, a group of patients with a devastating inflammatory disease cannot benefit from an excellent treatment option. After a critical review of the current literature, we conclude that there is not sufficient evidence to warn against such a regimen if recommended standard doses are used. A negative effect on the heart function seems to occur if unconventional high doses of TNF-α blockers are given. The theoretical background for this is discussed. © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Hip fracture is associated with increased mortality. Our aim was to study potential risk factors, including osteoporosis, associated with short- and long-term mortality in a prospectively recruited cohort of fragility hip fracture patients. Fragility hip fracture patients aged >50 years admitted to a county hospital in Southern Norway in 2004 and 2005 were consecutively identified and invited for assessment. Patients with high energy or pathological fractures, patients with confusion, serious infections or who were non-residents in the catchment area were excluded. As part of a clinical routine, data were collected using questionnaires. Standardized bone density measurements of lumbar spine and hip were performed. Potential predictors of hip fracture mortality were tested using univariate and multivariate logistic regression analysis. A total of 432 hip fracture patients (129 males and 303 females) were prospectively identified. Among them 296 (85 males and 211 females) patients [mean age 80.7 (SD 9.1)] were assessed at the Osteoporosis center. Variables independently associated with short-term mortality (after 1 year) were in females older age [Odds Ratio (OR) 6.95] and in males older age (OR 5.74) and pulmonary disease (OR 3.20), whereas no associations were observed with mortality for 3 months after the fragility hip fracture. Variables independently associated with 5 years mortality in males was osteoporosis (OR 3.91) and older age (OR 6.95), and in females was dementia (OR 4.16) and older age (OR 2.80). Apart from known predictors as age and comorbidity osteoporosis in our study was identified as a potential independent predictor of long-term hip fracture mortality in males. This is of particular importance as treatment with bisphosphonates after hip fracture has been shown to reduce hip fracture mortality and may be a clinical target to reduce the burden of the disease. Further studies however are needed to confirm the validity of this finding.

Michelsen B.,Hospital of Southern Norway Trust | Diamantopoulos A.P.,Hospital of Southern Norway Trust | Hammer H.B.,Diakonhjemmet Hospital | Soldal D.M.,Hospital of Southern Norway Trust | And 2 more authors.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases | Year: 2016

Objective To investigate the association between clinical and ultrasonographic (US) evidence of inflammation in psoriatic arthritis (PsA), as well as to compare clinical and US remission criteria. Methods In this cross-sectional study 141 PsA outpatients were included. Minimal disease activity (MDA), 28-joint Disease Activity Score (DAS28), Disease Activity Index for PSoriatic Arthritis (DAPSA) and modified versions of Composite Psoriatic Disease Activity Index (CPDAI) and Psoriatic ArthritiS Disease Activity Score (PASDAS) were assessed. Remission criteria were explored. US evaluation was performed on 34 joints, in addition to joints being tender/swollen by 66/68 joint count, 30 tendons, 10 entheses and additionally entheses found to be tender by clinical examination of 19 other entheses. Power Doppler (PD) and grey scale global scores on joints, entheses and tendons were assessed. US remission was defined as no PD activity in joints, entheses and tendons. Results DAPSA and DAS28, but not CPDAI and PASDAS, were associated with PD activity. MDA was fulfilled in 22.7% and the clinical remission criteria in 5.7%-9.9% of the patients. US remission was found in 49.6% of the patients. The prevalence of PD activity at joints, entheses and tendons was similar for patients fulfilling versus not fulfilling MDA/clinical remission criteria. MDA (OR 2.3, p=0.048), DAPSA =3.3 (OR 4.2, p=0.025) and Boolean's (OR=7.8, p=0.033) definitions of remission were found to predict US remission. Conclusions We found major discrepancies between US and clinical findings. DAPSA and DAS28 reflected US findings better than CPDAI and PASDAS. MDA, DAPSA and Boolean's remission criteria predicted US remission. © 2016 BMJ Publishing Group Ltd & European League Against Rheumatism.

Diamantopoulos A.P.,Norwegian University of Science and Technology | Haugeberg G.,University of Agder | Hetland H.,Hospital of Southern Norway Trust | Soldal D.M.,Hospital of Southern Norway Trust | And 2 more authors.
Arthritis Care and Research | Year: 2014

Objective Color Doppler ultrasonography (CDUS) can detect inflammation in the vessel wall. No studies have evaluated the examination of the common carotid artery by CDUS in the diagnostics of giant cell arteritis (GCA). Our aim was to evaluate the combination of CDUS examination of the temporal, axillary, and common carotid arteries in the diagnosis of GCA. Methods Patients ages ≥50 years who were referred to our department between April 2010 and October 2012 and suspected to have GCA were consecutively examined. A positive clinical evaluation for GCA 6 months after the first evaluation by 3 rheumatologists was considered as the gold diagnostic standard. All patients underwent CDUS of the temporal, axillary, and common carotid arteries. A biopsy of the temporal artery was performed for most patients. Results A total of 88 patients were assessed. Forty-six patients were diagnosed to have GCA by the defined gold standard. Forty-eight patients had a positive CDUS of the temporal artery. Forty-six patients diagnosed with GCA had a positive CDUS of the temporal, common carotid, and axillary arteries (100% sensitivity) and 4 patients had a positive CDUS without having GCA (91% specificity). Among the 39 GCA patients that underwent a biopsy, vasculitis was observed in 26 patients (66%), yielding a sensitivity of 67% and a specificity of 95%. Conclusion CDUS of the common carotid, axillary, and temporal arteries had an excellent sensitivity and high specificity to diagnose GCA. CDUS has the potential to replace biopsy in ordinary clinical care without compromising on sensitivity and specificity. Copyright © 2014 by the American College of Rheumatology.

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