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Journal of Clinical Rheumatology ; 29(4 Supplement 1):S6, 2023.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2323777


Objectives: Patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) present greater severity of SARS-CoV-2 infection compared to the general population, particularly those with glomerulonephritis and who are treated with glucocorticoids. Likewise, high disease activity and some immunosuppressants have been associated with worse outcomes. The aim of this study was to describe the characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 infection in patients with SLE in Argentina from the SAR-COVID registry and to establish factors associated with a worse outcome. Method(s): Observational study. Patients diagnosed with SLE with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection (RT-PCR and/or positive serology) from the SAR-COVID registry were included. Data were collected from August 2020 to March 2022. The outcome of the infection was measured using the World Health Organization-ordinal scale (WHO-OS). Severe COVID-19 was defined as an WHO-OS value >=5. Descriptive analysis, Student's t , Mann Whitney U, ANOVA, Chi2 and Fisher's tests. Multivariable logistic regression. Result(s): A total of 399 patients were included, 93%female, with a mean age of 40.9 years (SD 12.2), 39.6% had at least one comorbidity. At the time of infection, 54.9% were receiving glucocorticoids, 30.8% immunosuppressants, and 3.3% biological agents. SARS-CoV-2 infection was mild in most cases, while 4.6% had a severe course and/or died. The latter had comorbidities, used glucocorticoids, and had antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) more frequently and higher disease activity at the time of infection. In the multivariate analysis, high blood pressure (OR 5.1, 95% CI 1.8-15.0), the diagnosis of APS (4.7, 95% CI 1.2-15.8), and the use of glucocorticoids (10 mg/day or more: OR 5.5, 95% CI 1.6-20.5) were associated with severe hospitalization and/or death from COVID-19 (WHO-EO >= 5). Conclusion(s): In this cohort of SLE patients with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, most had a symptomatic course, 22.1% were hospitalized, and 5% required mechanical ventilation. Mortality was close to 3%. The diagnosis of APS, having high blood pressure, and the use of glucocorticoids were significantly associated with severe COVID-19.

Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases ; 81:953, 2022.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2009002


Background: High disease activity, treatment with glucocorticoids (GC) and rituximab (RTX), have been related to worse outcomes of COVID-19. Objectives: To assess the clinical characteristics and severity of the SARS-CoV-2 infection in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) included in the SAR-COVID registry and to identify factors associated with poor outcomes. Methods: SAR-COVID is a national, longitudinal and observational registry. Patients of ≥18 years old, with diagnosis of RA (ACR-EULAR criteria 2010) who had confrmed SARS-CoV-2 infection (RT-PCR or positive serology) were included between 13-8-20 and 31-7-21. Sociodemographic and clinical data, comorbidities, disease activity and treatment at the moment of the SARS-CoV-2 infection were collected. Additionally, infection symptoms, complications, medical interventions and treatments for COVID-19 were registered. Infection severity was assessed using the WHO-ordinal scale (WHO-OS)1. A cut-off value of ≥5 identifed patients with severe COVID-19 and those who died. Statistical analysis: Descriptive statistics. Chi2 or Fischer test, Student T test or Mann-Whitney and Kruskal Wallis or ANOVA, as appropriate. Multiple logistic regression model. Results: A total of 801 patients were included, with a mean age of 53.1 ± 12.9 years, most of them were female (84.5%) and the median (m) disease duration was 8 years (IQR 4-14). One third were in remission and 46.4% had comor-bidities, being the most frequent, hypertension (26.9 %), dyslipidemia (13.5 %), obesity (13.4 %) and diabetes (8.9%). Moreover, 3.2% had interstitial lung disease (ILD) associated with RA. At SARS-CoV-2 diagnosis, 42.5% were receiving glucocorticoids (GC), 73.9% conventional (c) disease modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARD), 24% biologic (b) DMARD and 9.1% targeted synthetic (ts) DMARD. Among bDMARD, the most frequently used were TNF inhibitors (17%), followed by abatacept (2.8%), IL-6 inhibitors (2.4%) and rituximab (RTX) (2.1%). During the SARS-CoV-2 infection, 95.8% had symptoms, 27% required hospital-ization, 7.9% presented complications and 4.4% died due to COVID-19. Severe disease and death (WHO-OS≥5) was present in 7.5% of the patients. They were older (62.9±12.5 vs 52.2±12.7, p<0.001), and they had more frequently ILD (18.5% vs 2%, p<0.001), comorbidities (82.5% vs 43.7%, p<0.001), ≥2 comor-bidities (60.3% vs 25.8%, p<0.001), treatment with GC (61% vs 40.7%, p=0.04) and RTX (8.3% vs 1.6%, p=0.007). Conversely, the use of cDMARD and TNF inhibitors was more frequent in patients with WHO-OS<5, nevertheless this difference was not signifcant. Disease activity was comparable between groups. In multivariable analysis, older age, the presence of diabetes, ILD, the use of GC and RTX were signifcantly associated with WHO-OS≥5 (Figure 1). Furthermore, older age (65.7±10.8 vs 52.4±12.8, p<0.001), the presence of comor-bidities (87.9% vs 44.7%, p<0.001), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (21.9% vs 5.2%, p=0.002), diabetes (30.3% vs 7.9%, p<0.001), hypertension (57.6% vs 25.6%, p<0.001), cardiovascular disease (15.6% vs 3.2%, p=0.005), cancer (9.1% vs 1.3%, p=0.001), ILD (23.3% vs 2.4%, p<0.001) and the use of GC (61.8% vs 41.4%, p=0.02) were associated with mortality. Older age [OR 1.1 IC95% 1.06-1.13] and the use of GC 5-10 mg/day [OR 4.6 IC95% 1.8-11.6] remained signifcantly associated with death due to COVID-19. Conclusion: Treatment with RTX and GC, as well as older age, the presence of diabetes and ILD were associated with poor COVID-19 outcomes in this national cohort of patients with RA. Older patients and those taking GC had a higher mortality rate.

Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases ; 81:1668-1669, 2022.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2008860


Background: Persistent symptoms after acute COVID have been described previously. Main symptoms reported are fatigue, arthralgias, myalgias and mental sickness. Defnition and methods vary widely.1 Objectives: To asses prevalence and related factors to long COVID in a retrospective cohort of patients with rheumatic diseases from Argentina. Methods: A total of 1915 patients were registered from August 18th, 2020 to July 29th, 2021. Patients > 18 years old, with rheumatic disease and confrmed infection by SARS-CoV-2 (antigen or RT-PCR) were included. Those dead, with unknown outcome, wrong date or missing data were excluded. Demographic data, comorbidities, rheumatic disease, and characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 infection were recorded. Long COVID was defned according to NICE guidelines (persistent symptoms for more than 4 weeks, without alternative diagnosis). Long COVID symptoms were defned by rheumatologist. Severity of infection was clas-sifed according to WHO ordinal scale. We used descriptive statistics, univariate model (Student's test, chi square test, ANOVA) and multivariate logistic regression analysis. Results: 230 (12%) had long COVID. Median age was 51 (IQR 40-61]) years, 82% were females, 51% were not caucasian. Median of education was 13.3 years (IQR 12-16), 79 % had private health insurance and 55 % were employed. Nearly half (n=762, 46%) had comorbidities, the most prevalent was hypertension (n=396, 24%). The most frequent rheumatic diseases were rheumatoid arthritis (n=719, 42%) and systemic lupus ery-thematosus (n=280, 16 %). Most were in low activity/remission (79%), used Conventional DMARD (n=773 patients, 45%) and steroids (n=588, 34%) at low dose (n=415, 71%). Main laboratory findings were abnormal D-di-mer (n=94, 28%) and leukopenia (n=93, 26%). Most patients had a WHO ordinal scale < 5 (n=1472, 86%). Median of hospitalization at intensive care unit (ICU) was 8 days [IQR 5, 13]. Treatment for SARS-CoV-2 infection (steroids, anticoagulation, azithromycin, convalescent plasma) was used in 461 (27%) patients. Most of long COVID (n= 152, 69%) reported 1 symptom, the most frequent was fatigue (n= 55, 22%). Figure 1. Univariate analysis is presented in Table 1. In multivariate logistic regression analysis non-caucasian ethnicity OR 1.44 (1.07-1.95), years of education OR 1.05 (1-1.09), treatment with cyclophosphamide OR 11.35 (1.56-112.97), symptoms of COVID-19 OR 13.26 (2.75-242.08), severity scale WHO ≥ 5 OR 2.46 (1.68-3.57), and ICU hospitalization days OR 1.09 (1.05-1.14) were factors associated to long COVID. Conclusion: Prevalence of long COVID was 12%. Non-caucasian ethnicity, higher education, treatment with cyclophosphamide, symptoms of COVID-19, severe disease and ICU hospitalization days were related to long COVID.

Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases ; 81:930-931, 2022.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2008849


Background: Patients with rheumatic diseases (RD) have been excluded from SARS-CoV-2 vaccine trials. Though data appear to show safety and efficacy, mostly evidence remains in mRNA vaccines. However in our country, adenovirus and inactivated vaccines, as well as heterologous schemes are frequently used. Objectives: To describe clinical characteristics and outcomes of SARS-CoV-2 infection after vaccination in patients with RD from de the SAR-CoVAC registry and to compare them with patients who got infected before vaccination. Additionally, factors associated with COVID-19 unfavorable outcome were assessed. Methods: Adult patients with RD who have been vaccinated for SARS-CoV-2 were consecutively included between June 1st and December 21st, 2021. Con-frmed SARS-CoV-2 infection (RT-PCR o serology) was reported by the treated physician. Infection after an incomplete scheme was defned when the event was diagnosed at least 14 days after frst dose;and after a complete scheme when it occurred > 14 days after second dose. Homologous scheme is defned by two same doses of vaccine and heterologous by two different doses. Patients with previous SARS-CoV-2 infection were excluded. To compare SARS-CoV-2 infection characteristics in not vaccinated patients, subjects from the SAR-COVID registry, which includes patients with RD and SARS-CoV-2 infection, were matched 2:1 by gender, age and RD. WHO-Ordinal Scale ≥5 was used to defne unfavorable infection outcome. Descriptive statics, Chi2 test, Fischer test, T test and ANOVA were used. Results: A total of 1350 patients from the SAR COVAC registry were included, 67 (5%) presented SARS-CoV-2 infection after vaccination. The later were mostly (72%) females with a mean age of 57 (SD 15) years old. The most frequent RD were rheumatoid arthritis (41%), psoriatic arthritis (12%) and systemic lupus erythematosus (10%). At vaccination, most of them (75%) had low disease activity or remission, 19% were taking steroids, 39% methotrex-ate, 27% bDMARDs and 6% JAK inhibitors. A total of 11 (16%) patients had SARS-CoV-2 infection <14 days after the frst vaccine dose, 39 (58%) after an incomplete scheme and 17 (25 %) following a complete one. In the incomplete scheme group, 59% received Gam-COVID-Vac, 31% ChAdOx1 nCov-19 and 10% BBIBP-CorV;and in patients with complete scheme 47%, 24% and 29%, respectively. No event was reported after a complete heterologous scheme. No signifcant differences regarding sociodemoghraphic characteristics, RD, disease treatment, type of vaccine and regimen was found between in those with infection and those without it. After vaccination only 8 (12%) of the patients who got infected had an unfavorable course, 88% of them following an incomplete scheme (5 received Gam-COVID-Vac, 1 ChAdOx1 nCov-19 and 1 BBIBP-CorV) and one subject after a complete homologous Gam-COVID-Vac scheme. Having an unfavorable outcome of SARS-CoV-2 infection was associated to: male gender [63% vs 24%, p=0.036], older age [mean 70 years (SD 7) vs 55 years (SD 15), p=0.005], being Caucasian [100% vs 54%, p=0.018], higher education [mean 17 years (SD 4) vs 12 years (SD 4), p=0.010], the presence of comorbid-ities [100% vs 39%, p=0.001, having pulmonary disease [37% vs 5%, p=0.019], dyslipidemia [63% vs 17%, p=0.011] and arterial hypertension [63% vs 24%, p=0.036], RD, treatments, disease activity and types of vaccines received were comparable between groups. When comparing patients with and without vaccination prior SARS-CoV-2 infection, those who received at least one dose of vaccine had less frequently severe COVID-19 (12% vs 24%, p=0.067) and presented lower mortality due to COVID-19 (3% vs 6%, p=0.498). However these differences did not reach statistical signifcance. Conclusion: In the SAR-CoVAC registry 5% of the patients had SARS-CoV-2 infection after vaccination, most of them mild and 25% after a complete scheme. Any vaccine was associated with severe COVID-19. When comparing with non-vaccinated patients, those with at least one dose, had less frequently severe disease and died due COVID-19.

Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases ; 81:1665-1666, 2022.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2008843


Background: Currently there is little information on the efficacy and safety of SARS-CoV-2 vaccination in patients with immune-mediated diseases and/or under immunosuppressive treatment in our country, where different types of vaccines and mix regimens are used. For this reason, the Argentine Society of Rheumatology (SAR) with the Argentine Society of Psoriasis (SOARPSO) set out to develop a national register of patients with rheumatic and immune-mediated infammatory diseases (IMIDs) who have received a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in order to assess their efficacy and safety in this population. Objectives: To assess SARS-CoV-2 vaccine efficacy and safety in patients with rheumatic and IMIDs. Methods: SAR-CoVAC is a national, multicenter and observational registry. Adult patients with a diagnosis of rheumatic or IMIDs who have been vaccinated for SARS-CoV-2 were consecutively included between June 1st and September 17th, 2021. Sociodemographic data, comorbidities, underlying rheumatic or IMIDs, treatments received and their modifcation prior to vaccination and history of SARS-CoV-2 infection were recorded. In addition, the date and place of vaccination, type of vaccine applied, scheme and indication will be registered. Finally, adverse events (AE), as well as SARS-CoV-2 infection after the application of the vaccine were documented Results: A total of 1234 patients were included, 79% were female, with a mean age of 57.8 (SD 14.1) years. The most frequent diseases were rheumatoid arthritis (41.2%), osteoarthritis (14.5%), psoriasis (12.7%) and spondy-loarthritis (12.3%). Most of them were in remission (28.5%) and low disease activity (41.4%). At the time of vaccination, 21% were receiving glucocorti-coid treatment, 35.7% methotrexate, 29.7% biological (b) Disease Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drugs (DMARDs) and 5.4% JAK inhibitors. Before vaccine application 16.9% had had a SARS-CoV-2 infection. Regarding the frst dose of the vaccine, the most of the patients (51.1%) received Gam-COV-ID-Vac, followed by ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (32.8%) and BBIBP-CorV (14.5%). In a lesser proportion, BNT162b2 (0.6%), Ad26.COV2.S (0.2%) and Coro-naVac (0.2%) vaccines were used. Almost half of them (48.8%) completed the scheme, 12.5% were mix regimenes, the most frequent being Gam-COVID-Vac/mRNA-1273. The median time between doses was 51days (IQR 53). More than a quarter (25.9%) of the patients reported at least one AE after the frst dose and 15.9% after the second. The fu-like syndrome and local hypersensitivity were the most frequent manifestations. There was one case of mild anaphylaxis. No patient was hospitalized. Altogether, the incidence of AE was 246.5 events/1000 doses. BBIBP-CorV presented signifcantly lower incidence of AE in comparison with the other types of vaccines. (118.5 events/1000 doses, p<0.002 in all cases) Regarding efficacy, 63 events of SARS-CoV-2 infection were reported after vaccination, 19% occurred before 14 days post-vaccination, 57.1% after the frst dose (>14 days) and 23.8% after the second. In most cases (85.9%) the infection was asymptomatic or had an outpatient course and 2 died due to COVID-19. Conclusion: In this national cohort of patients with rheumatic and IMIDs vaccinated for SARS-CoV-2, the most widely used vaccines were Gam-COVID-Vac and ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, approximately half completed the schedule and in most cases homologously. A quarter of the patients presented some AE, while 5.1% presented SARS-CoV-2 infection after vaccination, in most cases mild.