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Review
, 60 (5), 32-8

Geriatric Autoimmune Diseases: Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, Sjogren's Syndrome, and Myositis

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  • PMID: 15877483
Review

Geriatric Autoimmune Diseases: Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, Sjogren's Syndrome, and Myositis

Jenny T Diep et al. Geriatrics.

Abstract

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), Sjogren's syndrome (SS), and dermatomyositis (DM)/polymyositis (PM) may be encountered in geriatric patients due to improved survival rates in patients with younger ages of onset or from elderly-onset (EO) disease. EO disease accounts for up to 20% of patients affected by these disorders, and is typically insidious rather than acute. Whereas SS and DM/PM are considered autoimmune diseases with distinct organ specificity, SLE is a systemic disorder that may affect multiple organ systems. Commonly used clinical and laboratory criteria for defining and diagnosing these diseases were largely developed for patients age <65, and need to be modified in the geriatric patient. Therapeutic strategies include attention to ongoing drug regimens, medical comorbidities, and the roles of fatigue, depression, and arthropathy. Each disease may be responsive to low-dose corticosteroids, with a role for first or second-line immunosuppressives as steroid-sparing agents.

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