Clinical and laboratory profiles of primary Sjogren's syndrome in a Chinese population: A retrospective analysis of 315 patients

Int J Rheum Dis. 2015 May;18(4):439-46. doi: 10.1111/1756-185X.12583. Epub 2015 Apr 30.


Aim: To assess the clinical and laboratory features of primary Sjogren's syndrome (pSS) in a large teaching hospital in China.

Methods: Three hundred and fifteen pSS patients diagnosed according to American-European Classification Criteria and consecutively admitted to Anhui Provincial Hospital from 1 January 1999 to 30 September 2012 were retrospectively selected in this study.

Results: The median age was 46.8 ± 14.4 years (range 13-83 years) and the majority of patients were female (96.5%). The common clinical features at initial presentations were dry mouth (50.2%), dry eyes (31.4%) and joint pain (24.8%); 92.6% of patients had positive anti-SSA antibody and 49.2% patients had positive anti-SSB antibody. One hundred and eighteen patients underwent labial salivary gland biopsy. According to Chisholm grading criteria, grade 3 to 4 was present in 58.5% of the patients. The frequency of interstitial lung disease (ILD) occurred (20.9%) in the patients with systemic extraglandular manifestations. The patients with ILD were frequently associated with positive anti-SSA (P = 0.005) and low levels of C3. The most common impairment of lung function was small airway function abnormalities. Sixty-six pSS patients with ILD (pSS-ILD) were diagnosed with high-resolution computed tomography and treated with corticosteroids and/or immunosuppressants, in which 18 patients had improved pulmonary function.

Conclusion: Labial salivary gland biopsy and anti-nuclear antibodies spectrum were important to the diagnosis of pSS. The pSS patients had high percentage of ILD, especially small airway function abnormalities. The combination of corticosteroids and immunosuppressants appears to be effective in treatment of pSS patients with ILD.

Keywords: complications; primary Sjogren's syndrome; retrospective analysis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • China
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Incidence
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / diagnosis*
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / epidemiology*
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / therapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Sex Distribution
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / drug therapy
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Immunosuppressive Agents