Objective: To determine prognostic factors for mortality in a cohort of 667 patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) including those variables associated with the presence of antiphospholipid antibodies (aPL) as well as antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) itself.
Methods: Analysis of the cohort under a nested case control design by means of Cox proportional hazards regression with and without stepwise method.
Results: During the 2039 person-years of followup, there were 49 deaths (cases). Thrombocytopenia, arterial occlusions, and hemolytic anemia were the aPL related manifestations that were associated with decreased survival in univariate analyses. The first 2 were also selected among risk factors for mortality in stepwise Cox multivariate analysis. The syndrome itself was also associated with increased mortality rates, independently of other variables.
Conclusion: APS is among the variables that confer decreased survival on patients with SLE. This decreased survival is due to some (e.g., thrombocytopenia or arterial occlusions), but not all, of the manifestations of APS.