Background Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a systemic autoimmune disease that causes chronic inflammation of the joints and surrounding tissues.
In this paper we provide the first data on the incidence of AR in patients hospitalized in the University Hospital Center in the period 2004-2011. All cases are new cases with AR, for the first time in QSUT, during the study period.
Objectives 1) to recognize the burden of AR disease in Albania; 2) to evaluate the trend of the disease in years; 3) to evaluate the occurrence of the disease in relation to age by gender.
Methods All patients were evaluated clinically and laboratory blood samples for evaluation of FR, and were diagnosed according to the international criteria for diagnosis of AR. The data were obtained from hospital electronic registry 2004-2012 (Statistical Service, University Hospital Center), including patients aged ≥ 14 years, diagnosed for the first time with the AR. The data for the total number of the population were obtained from the registry Census 2001, INSTAT.
Results 73.8% of the population affected with AR were female and 26.2% were male (F / M = 2.8 / 1). The average age of the total population was 48.94 ± 11.86 years. Annual incidence rate was 11/100 000. AR incidence for females was 15.9/100 000. and 5.8/100 000 for men. RA was rare in men under the age of 45 years. The incidence in men increased significantly with age
The incidence for AR patients grows up to the age of 44-55 years, and declines sharply after the age of 65. Higher incidence of AR was seen in 2006 (11.07/100000), 2005 (11.62/100000) and in 2011 (12.87/100000).
Conclusions AR is one of the most common diseases in the Albanian population.
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Acknowledgements Gratitude to all colleagues who have worked and are working in the service of Rheumatology at the University Hospital Center “Mother Teresa” in Tirana, and especially Prof. Dr. Koco Poro, Prof. Dr. Tafaj agenda, and Dr. Besa Vukatana.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared