Annals of Thoracic Medicine Official publication of the Saudi Thoracic Society, affiliated to King Saud University
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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 176-180

Prevalence and risk factors of asymptomatic bronchiectasis in patients with rheumatoid arthritis at a tertiary care center in Saudi Arabia

Department of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Suzan Mansour Attar
Department of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, P. O. Box 80215, Jeddah-21589
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1817-1737.160836

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Introduction and Objectives: Bronchiectasis is a pulmonary manifestation that often occurs in individuals with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Nevertheless, the prevalence of bronchiectasis in RA patients and predictors of its development/progression remain ill-defined. Our objective was to investigate the prevalence of bronchiectasis in a group of RA patients and examine possible clinical or biochemical risk factors that might contribute to its development. Methods: This was an observational study analyzing 100 RA patients with no pulmonary symptoms selected from King Abdulaziz University Hospital in the Western region of Saudi Arabia from October 2013 to 2014. Demographic, clinical and laboratory information were collected for all patients. Diagnosis was based on the 2010 American College of Rheumatology (ACR)/European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) classification system, and disease activity was assessed using the 28-Joint Disease Activity Score Index with C-reactive protein; high-resolution computed tomography chest scans were performed. The prevalence of bronchiectasis was recorded and its association with different risk factors was examined using standard statistical methods. Results: All 100 patients fulfilled the ACR and EULAR classification criteria for RA diagnosis. Their mean age was 51.05 ± 13.5 years, disease duration was 6.19 ± 6.4 years and disease activity index was 4 ± 1.3 (moderate activity). A total of 35 (35%) patients developed bronchiectasis. Notably, we observed significant positive associations of bronchiectasis with age, disease duration and male gender (P < 0.001, P = 0.006, P = 0.028, respectively). Conclusions: Asymptomatic bronchiectasis represents a common complication in moderately active RA patients within the Western Region of Saudi Arabia. Furthermore, several predictors of bronchiectasis development were identified, which can contribute to effective risk stratification in RA patients. Further prospective studies are needed to detect the prognosis of asymptomatic bronchiectasis in RA patients.

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