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A population-based assessment of live births in women with systemic lupus erythematosus
  1. Évelyne Vinet1,2,
  2. Jeremy Labrecque1,
  3. Christian A Pineau2,
  4. Ann E Clarke1,3,
  5. Yvan St-Pierre1,
  6. Robert Platt4,
  7. Sasha Bernatsky1,2
  1. 1Division of Clinical Epidemiology, McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Canada
  2. 2Division of Rheumatology, McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Canada
  3. 3Division of Allergy and Immunology, McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Canada
  4. 4Department of Epidemiology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Évelyne Vinet, Montreal General Hospital, McGill University Health Centre, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Room A6 162.2, Montreal (PQ), Canada, H3G 1A4; evelyne.vinet{at}


Objectives The authors aim to calculate the number of live births, before and after systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) diagnosis, in women diagnosed during their reproductive years and to compare this with general population rates.

Methods The authors identified women with SLE using Quebec administrative databases (1 January 1994 to 31 December 2003). The authors determined the number of live births, and calculated the standardised incidence ratio (SIR) of observed to expected live births.

Results 1334 women with SLE were identified. Overall, the number of live births over the interval (559) was below that which would be expected (708) (SIR 0.79; 95% CI 0.73 to 0.86). Compared with the general population, live births were substantially lower after SLE diagnosis (SIR 0.62; 95% CI 0.55 to 0.70) than before diagnosis (SIR 1.01; 95% CI 0.90 to 1.13).

Conclusion After diagnosis, women with SLE have substantially fewer live births than the general population.

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  • Funding This research received no specific funding.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Ethics approval Ethics approval was obtained from the McGill University ethics committee.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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