Hormone replacement therapy in women with systemic lupus erythematosus and risk of cardiovascular disease

Lupus. 2009 Apr;18(4):313-7. doi: 10.1177/0961203308097475.


We sought to determine the impact of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) on the occurrence of coronary artery disease (CAD) in women with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Women in the University of Toronto lupus database who had taken HRT with no history of CAD were compared with all post-menopausal female patients with no history of HRT or CAD. Chi-squared and t-tests were used to compare the risk factors of CAD and Kaplan-Meier curve, log rank test and proportional hazard model with time-dependent covariates were used to compare the time from entry into the clinic to occurrence of CAD. A total of 114 HRT-user patients with no history of CAD were compared with 227 post-menopausal non-HRT user SLE controls. The groups were similar with respect to lupus anticoagulant, antiphospholipid antibody, cumulative steroid dose and classic cardiac risk factors. A similar percentage of patients developed CAD in the control (13.7%) and HRT (11.4%) groups. There was no difference in the time to development of CAD. In the multivariate analysis, HRT was not a risk factor for CAD. Only age (P = 0.0001, HR = 1.11, 95% CI = 1.05, 1.17) and SLEDAI-2K (P = 0.0001, HR = 1.10, 95% CI = 1.05, 1.16) were significantly associated with the risk of CAD. In this small group of patients with SLE, HRT alone did not appear to predispose to CAD.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid / metabolism
  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Cohort Studies
  • Coronary Artery Disease / epidemiology
  • Coronary Artery Disease / etiology*
  • Databases, Factual
  • Estrogen Replacement Therapy / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glucocorticoids / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Lupus Coagulation Inhibitor / metabolism
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / complications*
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / physiopathology
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Postmenopause*
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Risk Factors
  • Time Factors


  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid
  • Glucocorticoids
  • Lupus Coagulation Inhibitor