To compare Pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP) in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) with PCP in patients with non-RA connective tissue diseases (CTDs) in order to clarify the characteristics of the former. We extracted consecutive patients satisfying the following criteria for Bclinical PCP^: (1) positive plasma β-D-glucan, (2) PCP-compatible computed tomography findings of the lung, and (3) successful treatment with antipneumocystic antibiotics. Patients who underwent methylprednisolone Bpulse^ therapy or sufficient antibiotics to cure bacterial pneumonia were excluded. We used the t test, U test, or Fischer’s exact probability test to compare the two groups and Jonckheere-Terpstra’s test and Ryan’s procedure for the trend test. Thirty-five cases were extracted. The underlying rheumatic diseases were RA in 25 and non-RA CTDs in ten. At the onset of clinical PCP, the lymphocyte counts were 884 vs 357/mm (p < 0.001), PC-PCR positivity 64% vs 100% (p = 0.029), glucocorticoid dose 4.0 vs 17.5 mg PSL/day (p < 0.001), and methotrexate dose 8 vs 0 mg/week (p = 0.003). The PC-PCR-negative patients, observed only in the RA group, were all receiving methotrexate (MTX) therapy except one patient who was receiving high-dose pred- nisolone alone. All PC-PCR-positive patients were receiving glucocorticoid, TNF inhibitor, or a non-MTX
Clinical Rheumatology – Springer Journals
Published: Jun 6, 2018
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