Association between relapsing polychondritis and systemic lupus erythematosus

South Med J. 1994 Jul;87(7):753-7. doi: 10.1097/00007611-199407000-00017.


Relapsing polychondritis (RP) is an autoimmune disorder with chondritis as a prominent clinical feature. This disease has been found to coexist in some patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) or vice versa. We report a patient with clinical criteria fulfilling the diagnosis of RP. She had elevated levels of anti-dsDNA and decreased levels of CH50 during the 6-month observation, without clinical manifestations of SLE except for arthritis. We also reviewed all 16 cases of previously described patients with RP and SLE. From our study, we conclude that chondritis is rare in patients with SLE. If immunologic abnormalities usually found in SLE are detected in patients with RP, clinicians should observe patients for other manifestations of SLE.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Antinuclear / analysis
  • DNA / immunology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / complications*
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / diagnosis
  • Polychondritis, Relapsing / complications*
  • Polychondritis, Relapsing / diagnosis
  • Polychondritis, Relapsing / pathology


  • Antibodies, Antinuclear
  • DNA