The association between viral infection and autoimmune diseases is an established phenomenon in medicine. Hepatitis C viral infection is known to have such an association; however, its association with systemic lupus erythematosus has not been studied in a real life study driven from a large national database. The objective of this study was to investigate the association between SLE and chronic hepatitis C viral infection. Patients with SLE were compared with age- and sex-matched controls regarding the proportion chronic HCV infection. Chi-square and t tests were used for univariate analysis, and a logistic regression model was used for multivariate analysis. The study was performed utilizing the medical database of Clalit Health Services in Israel. There was a significant higher proportion of hepatitis C viral infection in SLE patients as compared to controls (1.06 and 0.39%, respectively; p < 0.001). A significant association was also observed among patients of higher socioeconomic status. In a multivariate logistic regression analysis, SLE was significantly associated with hepatitis C viral infection (OR = 2.07, 95% CI = 1.46–2.90). To conclude, Patients with SLE have a greater proportion of chronic HCV infection than matched controls.[MediaObject not available: see fulltext.].
- Autoimmune disease
- Hepatitis C