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L. D. Pereira, J. E. Hong, T. N. Hwang, C. Kum, S. Lin, T. J. McCulley; Giant Cell Arteritis in Asians: A Comparative Study. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2007;48(13):923.
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Giant cell arteritis (GCA) is most frequently seen in Caucasians with an estimated incidence between 2 to 30/100,000. Although isolated cases have been described, the incidence in Asians has only been studied in Japan. This study was designed to compare the incidence of GCA in Asians and Caucasians.
The ethnicity of patients with positive temporal artery biopsies between July 1989 and July 2006 was determined by medical record review and the ethnic distribution of the patient population from the UCSF computer database. The ratio of the number of patients with positive biopsies to the proportion of the patient population of each ethnicity (Asian and Causation) was compared using Fisher's exact test.
The ethnic distribution of the 24 patients with positive temporal artery biopsies were as follows: Caucasian (n=20, 83%), Asian (n=0) and other (n=4, 17%). The patient population at our institution during the same time period was estimated as follows: Caucasian 59%, Asian 23% and other 18%. The difference in the incidence of GCA in Asians and Caucasians was statistically significant (P=0.002).
In our patient population a significant lower occurrence rate of GCA was seen in Asian relative to Caucasian patients (p=0.002) with Asians being more than 7.8X less likely to be affected. Given the reported incidence in Caucasians the incidence can therefore be roughly estimated to be less than 0.26 to 3.8/100,000.
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