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Assessment of children presenting with rheumatic complaints to a tertiary center in Turkey: differences in an Eastern Mediterranean population

Aim

To evaluate the profile of rheumatic complaints in children in Turkey. The data of the first half of a 6-month prospective study is presented.

Methods

Demographic features, medical history, symptoms and signs of children with rheumatic complaints were analysed prospectively in a tertiary health center in central Anatolia. A detailed rheumatologic examination was done. Complete blood counts, ESR, CRP measurement were performed in all patients; other studies were done if necessary.

Results

From 01st December 2007 to 29th February 2008, a total of 241 children (M/F: 124/117; mean age 8.0 ± 4.0 years) were enrolled. Knee, ankle, hip and wrist were the most frequently involved joints. 61.8% had rheumatic diseases, and 38.2% had non-rheumatic diseases. The common causes constituted of familial Mediterranean fever (12.0%), other periodic fever syndromes (2.1%), HSP (8.7%) and other vasculitides (3.7%), JIA (10.0%), toxic synovitis (6.6%), rheumatic complaints during the course of an infectious disease (7.9%), growth pain (12.9%), orthopedic problems (18.7%); acute rheumatic fever (1.7%), malignancy (1.7%), SLE (1.2%), dermatomyositis (0.4%), overlap syndrome (0.4%) and fibromyalgia (0.8%) were rare.

Conclusion

This is the first study assessing the profile of rheumatic complaints in this part of the world. Our results have showed that auto-inflammatory diseases are strikingly high. Vasculitides and HSP are higher, whereas fibromyalgia is very rare compared to Western Europe. The frequency of ARF has decreased.

Author information

Correspondence to Ö Bircan Cavkaytar.

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Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Keywords

  • Vasculitis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Rheumatic Disease
  • Synovitis
  • Familial Mediterranean Fever