Objectives Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) is a widely used medicine in the treatment of autoimmune rheumatic diseases. Many scientific studies have highlighted its hypolipidemic effect. We investigated the effect of HCQ to the lipid profile of patients with Sjogren’s syndrome (SS).
Methods The current retrospective observational study included 71 female patients diagnosed with SS based on the American European Consensus Criteria, who were treated with HCQ. This drug was given in SS patients for arthralgias or arthritis, as well as to treat sicca symptoms. The patients were tested for lipid profile, more specific, the levels of total cholesterol (CHOL), high density lipoproteins (HDL), low density lipoproteins (LDL), triglycerides (TGL) and atherogenic index before the beginning of treatment with HCQ and 6 months, 1, 3 and 5 years after the treatment with HCQ. The analysis was made for all patients and individually for those who were getting hypolipidemic treatment (21 patients) or not (50 patients).
Results All patients were women with average age 64±11 years and average duration of treatment with HCQ 7.2±3.6 years. For all patients was noted statistically significant decrease of total cholesterol (levels before treatment 217±40 and after 5 years 206±32, p=0.006). A statistically significant difference was observed to the levels of HDL (57±14 vs 67±17, p<0.001) and also important was the reduction of the levels of atherogenic index (4.0±1.3 vs 3,3±0,9, p<0.001). Patients who were not getting hypolipidemic treatment showed statistically significant changes during the same time: decrease of total cholesterol (214±40 vs 208±34, p=0.049), increase of the levels of HDL (55±15 vs 60±13, p=0.006) and decrease of the levels of atherogenic index (4.0±1.4 vs 3.3±0.9, p<0.001). In addition, the changes to the lipid profile of patients who were getting hypolipidemic treatment at the same time with HCQ, were not statistically significant for CHOL levels (227±39 vs 203±27, p=0.109), atherogenic index (4.0±0.9 vs 3.2±0.9, p=0.013) and HDL levels (58±12 to 68±17, p=0.011).
Conclusions The use of HCQ to this particular group of patients with SS, is related to a statistically significant decrease of total cholesterol, increase of HDL and improvement of atherogenic index. Taking under consideration the high safety profile and the low cost of the drug, HCQ can be used to patients with SS and coexisting dyslipidemia.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared