Background Polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) is an inflammatory disease characterized by pain and stiffness that usually affects the upper body and the pelvis. PMR is related frequently to another inflammatory disorder called giant cell arteritis (GCA), where about 50% of patients present polymyalgia. PET/CT offers functional and molecular information about inflammatory diseases that leads to the vasculitis diagnosis in an early stage, so PET/CT is a useful diagnosis tool to identify CGA associated with PMR
Objectives To evaluate the incidence of GCA in patients diagnosed of PMR.
Methods Prospective study from January 2011 until December 2015 including patients with PMR from the Rheumatology Department of HUP La Fe. In all cases to confirm the diagnosis of vasculitides an 18-FDG PET/CT was made. Also blood analysis that includes CRP and ERS, US and biopsy and treatment with esteroids or another DMARD was done. Statistical analysis was performed using R software 3.2.3.
Results 23 patients with PMR diagnosis according to established Bird/Wood criteria were included, with a mean age at the time of PET/CT of 69.3 years (38–85). 18 were treated with steroids before PET/CT and 11 had another DMAR during follow up.
In 47.8% of patients vasculitis was detected using PET/CT. Most frequent injury locations were aorta, iliac artery, and femoral artery. In these patients there is an increase in the CRP value (P=0.03) comparing to those without vasculitides. There were no significant differences in the ESR value or in the DMAR administration.
Conclusions PET/CT is a useful diagnostic tool for the early diagnosis of vasculitides associated with PMR. This allows an early and adequate treatment in order to avoid structural damages within the blood vessel (aneurysms, stenosis, oclussions), reducing morbi-mortality and fatal outcomes.
Disclosure of Interest None declared