Farida Karim has completed her MBBS from Jinnah Medical and Dental College Karachi and internship from Aga Khan University Hospital. She is working currently as Medical Offi cer in the Aga Khan University Hospital, Pakistan which is the best and most advanced healthcare service organization. She has published three artilces and working on several other projects that are under reviewing process.
Objective: To determine the clinical and immunological characteristics and short-term outcome of children with systemic lupus erythematosus (cSLE) presented at a tertiary care center in Karachi, Pakistan.
Design: A descriptive observational study conducted at the Paediatric Rheumatology Clinic of Aga Khan University Hospital(AKUH), Karachi, from January 2011 to April 2015.
Methodology: Data of children <16 years of age, admitted to the Paediatric ward, diagnosed with cSLE, was studied.
Results: 32 children satisfying the criteria of American College of Rheumatology (ACR) for cSLE were enrolled. A female predominance was observed, with 87.5% of the patients being female. Mean age at symptom onset was 10.5+2.7 years and 8.8+2.1 years in females and males respectively. Mean age at diagnosis was 11.3+2.8 years in females and 9.4+1.9 years in males. Fever was the most common non-specifi c symptom found in 84% patients. 69% children were found to be anemic and 56% had signs of arthritis at presentation. Renal involvement was observed in 47% patients. Th e most common immunological markers were found to be serum Anti-neutrophil antibodies (ANA), positive in 88% patients, followed by Anti-double-stranded DNA antibodies (anti ds-DNA), raised in 81% cases. Overall response rate to therapy was 50% in 20 children who were followed for four years.
Conclusion: We found that cSLE encompasses a wide variety of manifestations with a female preponderance. Fever and Arthralgia are the most frequent clinical fi ndings. Hemolytic anemia is the most common laboratory abnormality, with ANA and Anti ds-DNA positivity in a majority of patients.