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Clinical presentations and outcomes of Filipino juvenile systemic lupus erythematosus

Carien B Gulay* and Leonila F Dans

Author Affiliations

Section of Pediatric Rheumatology, Department of Pediatrics, Philippine General Hospital-University of the Philippines Manila, Taft Avenue, Manila, Philippines

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Pediatric Rheumatology 2011, 9:7  doi:10.1186/1546-0096-9-7

Published: 9 February 2011



Juvenile Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) varies by location and ethnicity. This study describes the clinical, laboratory profile and outcome of juvenile SLE seen at Philippine General Hospital (PGH) from 2004-2008.


Medical charts of all Filipino Juvenile SLE cases admitted at PGH during the 5-year period were reviewed collecting demographic profile, clinical and laboratory manifestations and treatment during disease course.


Seventy-eight cases of juvenile SLE were reviewed. There were 7 boys and 71 girls. The mean age at diagnosis was 14 years (SD 2.7) with a range of 8-18 years. Fever (52.5%) and malar rash (41.0%) were the most common features at disease onset. At the time of diagnosis, the most common features were malar rash (65.3%), renal involvement (62.8%) and photosensitivity (55.1%). Mucocutaneous (92.3%), renal (71.7%) and hematologic (69.2%) involvement were the most common features during the entire course of illness. Infection (34.5%) and neurologic (19.0%) complications were observed most frequently. Corticocosteroid treatment was given in most of the patients in the form of prednisone (97.4%) and concomitant methylprednisolone intravenous pulses (29.4%). Nine patients died during the study period. The overall 5-year mortality rate was 11.5%. Infection (77.0%) was the most frequent cause of death.


Malar rash was a common feature at disease onset and at diagnosis among Filipinos with juvenile SLE. Throughout the disease course, renal involvement occurs in 71.7% of patients. Infection was the leading cause of complication and death. The clinical presentations of Filipinos with juvenile SLE were similar to juvenile SLE in other countries.