Table 1

Patients’ characteristics

Patients’ characteristicsAll patients (n=89)Patients with GCA (n=58)Patients without GCA (n=31)
Sex, no. of males26 (29%)15 (26%)11 (36%)
Age, median (range) years73 (44–96)74 (50–96)67 (44–90)
High-dose steroids started ≤7 days before baseline, no. of patients75 (84%)49 (85%)26 (84%)
TAB positive according to pathologist, no. of patients26 (29%)26 (45%)0 (0%)
TAB length, median (range) mm7 (2–20)7 (2–20)8 (2–13)
Fulfilling 1990 ACR criteria for GCA, no of patients72 (81%)50 (86%)22 (71%)
Any head pain present, no of patients85 (96%)55 (95%)30 (97%)
New localised head pain, no of patients77 (87%)48 (83%)29 (94%)
New generalised scalp tenderness, no of patients52 (58%)35 (60%)17 (55%)
Swelling over temporal artery, no of patients22 (25%)14 (24%)8 (26%)
Pain over temporal artery, no of patients49 (55%)29 (50%)20 (65%)
Jaw claudication, no of patients42 (47%)32 (55%)10 (32%)
Tongue claudication, no of patients3 (3%)2 (3%)1 (3%)
Any visual symptoms, no of patients47 (53%)30 (52%)17 (55%)
Reduced or lost vision, no of patients38 (43%)26 (45%)12 (39%)
Double vision, no of patients9 (10%)4 (7%)5 (16%)
Amaurosis fugax, no of patients2 (2%)2 (3%)0 (0%)
Anorexia, no of patients31 (35%)22 (38%)9 (29%)
Fatigue, no of patients65 (73%)42 (72%)23 (74%)
Fever or night sweats, no of patients38 (43%)25 (43%)13 (42%)
Polymyalgia, no of patients16 (18%)14 (24%)2 (7%)
Temporal artery thickening, no of patients28 (32%)21 (36%)7 (23%)
Temporal artery tenderness, no of patients50 (56%)29 (50%)21 (68%)
Temporal artery abnormal pulse, no of patients18 (20%)16 (28%)2 (7%)
Axillary artery tenderness, no of patients8 (9%)5 (9%)3 (10%)
AION*, no of patients15 (17%)10 (17%)5 (16%)
PION*, no of patients5 (6%)2 (3%)3 (10%)
RAPD*, no of patients7 (8%)5 (9%)2 (7%)
Ocular ischaemia (AION/PION/RAPD), no of patients19 (21%)12 (21%)7 (23%)
Ocular palsy*†, no of patients0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)
Bruits*, no of patients0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)
Stroke*2 (2%)0 (0%)2 (7%)
ESR, mm/hour,† median (range)34 (3–90)44 (3–90)9 (3–77)
CRP, mg/L,† median (range)46 (3–329)54 (3–329)13 (3–205)
Haemoglobin (g/dL), median (range)12.8 (8.9–16.0)12.0 (8.9–15.5)13.5 (10.1–16.0)
Platelets, 109/L, median (range)343 (126–661)363 (167–661)317 (126–522)
  • Details of the 89 patients recruited in the TABUL study at Southend University Hospital, who underwent ultrasound, temporal artery biopsy and 6 months follow-up.

  • ESR was determined in n=57 patients and CRP in n=54 subjects. ESR and CRP were measured before initiation of high-dose glucocorticoid treatment. Haemoglobin levels and platelet counts were determined prior to high-dose glucocorticoid treatment or within 7 days after initiation of this treatment.

  • *Considered negative if not reported.

  • †ESR and CRP were not performed in every subject.

  • AION, anterior ischaemic optic neuropathy;CRP, C-reactive protein; ESR, erythrocyte sedimentation rate; GCA, giant cell arteritis; PION, posterior ischaemic optic neuropathy; RAPD, relative afferent pupillary defect; TAB, temporal artery biopsy.