Objective: The hypothesis of a seasonal pattern in the onset of symptoms for some vasculitides has been raised in previous small studies.
Methods: Using the data collected by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) Subcommittee on Classification of Vasculitis, we specifically tested for a higher proportion of onset of symptoms in winter, lower in summer, and intermediate for the other seasons for polyarteritis nodosa (PAN) and Wegener's granulomatosis. We also tested for a higher proportion of onset of symptoms in the spring-summer months for giant cell arteritis (GCA).
Results and conclusions: The results of our study support the hypothesis of a seasonal trend for the onset of symptoms of Wegener's granulomatosis (p = 0.04) as described previously. No seasonal pattern was found for the other vasculitides studied (PAN and GCA).