Abdominal symptoms during Sjogren's syndrome: a pilot study

Adv Rheumatol. 2021 Jan 19;61(1):5. doi: 10.1186/s42358-021-00164-w.


Background: Abdominal symptoms in patients with primary Sjögren syndrome (pSS) are poorly documented. The objective of the study was to describe the abdominal symptoms of patients with pSS and to assess their association with characteristics of the disease.

Methods: One hundred and fifty patients with pSS were evaluated using a composite global symptom score for abdominal symptoms and their severity. Data concerning the clinical and biological characteristics of pSS and abdominal disorders were also collected.

Results: Of the patients with pSS, 95% suffered from abdominal symptoms (median global symptom score 7.5 ± 5.5 points out of 30). More than half of the patients experienced abdominal tension (68%), upper abdominal pain (54%), abdominal discomfort (58%) and/or constipation (54%). Regarding the pSS activity, in relation to European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) Sjögren syndrome disease activity index score items, general and central nervous system involvement wereassociated with a high global symptom score. The EULAR Sjogren Syndrome Patient Reported Index (ESSPRI) symptom score was positively correlated with the global symptom score (p < 0.01). Multivariate analysis showed a significant association between a high global symptom score and SSA seronegativity, gastroparesis, and ESSPRI score (p < 0.01 for each).

Conclusions: The majority of patients with pSS suffered abdominal symptoms. There is currently no therapeutic recommendation because of the lack of information on the underlying pathophysiological mechanisms.

Trial registration: NCT03157011 . Date of registration: July 17, 2017.

Keywords: Abdominal symptoms; ESSDAI; ESSPRI; Gastroparesis; Quality of life; Sjögren’s syndrome.

MeSH terms

  • Abdomen*
  • Abdominal Pain / diagnosis
  • Abdominal Pain / etiology
  • Constipation / diagnosis
  • Constipation / etiology
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / diagnosis
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / etiology*
  • Gastroparesis / diagnosis
  • Gastroparesis / etiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Nausea / diagnosis
  • Nausea / etiology
  • Pilot Projects
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / complications*
  • Symptom Assessment*

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT03157011