Antimalarials and cholesterol profile of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus

A benefi cial influence of antimalarials on lipid profile of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients has been recently claimed. In this cross-sectional study, we evaluated the effect of chloroquine on cholesterol levels of a Brazilian population with SLE. Sixty patients were studied, 95% females. Mean age was 48.7 years (SD 13.3 years). Overweight or obesity was documented in 27 cases (45%). Thirty-four patients (56.6%) were using chloroquine in standard dosage, while 33 (55%) were on corticosteroids. Hypercholesterolemia was present in 26 patients (43.3%), while low HDLcholesterol levels were seen in 18 cases (30%). Normal cholesterolemia was documented equally in users and non-users of antimalarials (P > 0.20). After adjustment for statin and corticosteroid intake by multivariate analysis, cholesterol and HDL-cholesterol levels did not significantly differ in users or non-users of chloroquine (P > 0.05). There was no association of chloroquine intake with low body mass index (P = 0.314). Our findings suggest that antimalarial intake by itself does not distinguish cholesterol profiles in SLE patients.

systemic lupus erythematosus; antimalarials; cholesterol

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