Incidence and prevalence of psoriatic arthritis in Denmark: a nationwide register linkage study

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Abstract

Objectives

To examine the incidence and temporal trends of psoriatic arthritis (PsA) in the general population in Denmark.

Methods

Using nationwide registry data, we estimated the number of patients with incident PsA within each 1-year period between 1997 and 2011 and calculated the rate of PsA cases within gender and age subgroups. Incidence rates were presented per 100 000 person-years.

Results

There was a female predominance ranging from 50.3% (1998) to 59.2% (2010), and the mean age at time of diagnosis was 47–50 years. We identified a total of 12 719 patients with PsA (prevalence=0.22%), including 9034 patients where the PsA diagnosis was made by a rheumatologist (prevalence=0.16%). Incidence rates of PsA (per 100 000 person-years) increased from 7.3 in 1997 to a peak incidence of 27.3 in 2010. Incidence rates were highest for women and patients aged 50–59 years, respectively. The use of systemic non-biologic agents, that is, methotrexate, leflunomide, ciclosporin or sulfasalazine increased over the 15-year study course and were used in 66.3% of all patients. Biologic agents (etanercept, infliximab, adalimumab, certolizumab pegol, golimumab or ustekinumab) were used in 17.7% of patients with PsA.

Conclusions

We found a clear trend of rising PsA incidence on a national level. While the cause remains unclear, our findings might be explained by increased attention by patients and physicians.

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