Background: We aimed to describe the recent clinical characteristics of Takayasu arteritis (TA).
Methods and results: We enrolled 106 consecutive TA patients and compared the clinical characteristics of patients with TA onset before 1999 and after 2000, patients with onset at age less than 39 years and more than 40 years, patients with monophasic and relapsing-remitting clinical course, and patients with and without human lymphocyte antigen (HLA)-B52 allele. Among the patients with TA onset after 2000, the time from onset to diagnosis had decreased; the frequency of occlusion in aortic arch branches and the complication of moderate or severe aortic regurgitation (AR) had decreased, and the maximum dose of prednisolone and the use of immunosuppressive agents had increased. In patients with onset at age more than 40 years, the complications of coronary artery lesions and hypertension had increased, and the incidence of moderate or severe AR had decreased. In the relapsing-remitting group, the maximum dose of prednisolone and the use of immunosuppressive agents had increased, and the mean dose reduction rate of prednisolone was significantly high. There was no significant difference between patients with and without HLA-B52 allele.
Conclusions: The prognosis of TA patients has improved over the past decade, which may be related to early diagnosis because of the development of noninvasive diagnostic imaging tools and improved medical treatments.