Objectives: To assess disease severity in subsets of patients with cutaneous lupus erythematosus (CLE) by using outcome and quality-of-life measures, and to determine treatment responsiveness by establishing a Web-based database of patients with skin manifestations of lupus.
Design: Prospective, cross-sectional study.
Setting: University hospital cutaneous autoimmunity outpatient clinic.
Patients: One hundred fourteen patients who presented from January 15, 2007, to November 8, 2007, and met the criteria for having CLE or lupus-nonspecific skin disease.
Main outcome measures: Scores on the CLE Disease Activity and Severity Index and the modified Skindex-29 (a quality-of-life measure) completed at each visit.
Results: Seven patients (6.1%) presented with acute CLE, 21 (18.4%) with subacute CLE, 77 (67.5%) with chronic CLE, 7 (6.1%) with systemic lupus erythematosus and LE-nonspecific skin lesions, and 1 (0.9%) with LE-nonspecific skin disease only. The mean baseline CLE Disease Activity and Severity Index activity/damage scores in patients with acute, subacute, and chronic CLE were 6.4/5.1, 11.1/1.6, and 7.5/10.2, respectively. The mean baseline modified Skindex-29 scores were 76.3, 79.4, and 82.7, respectively (P = .80). The disease in 11 of the patients (9.6%) was considered refractory to conventional therapies. Significantly more patients in the refractory group than the nonrefractory group were current smokers (P = .006).
Conclusion: This Web-based database should allow collection of data related to disease activity, quality of life, and response to therapy at multiple centers.