[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The majority of patients with Chlamydia-induced reactive arthritis do not present with the classic triad of arthritis, conjunctivitis/iritis, and urethritis. Moreover, acute chlamydial infections are often asymptomatic. The aim of the present study was to assess the prevalence of synovial Chlamydia trachomatis and Chlamydia pneumoniae infections in patients with chronic undifferentiated spondylarthritis (uSpA).
Study patients met the European Spondylarthropathy Study Group criteria for SpA, without evidence of ankylosing spondylitis, psoriasis, inflammatory bowel disease, or preceding dysentery. Symptoms were present for >or=6 months. Each patient underwent a synovial biopsy; tissue and concomitantly obtained peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for C trachomatis and C pneumoniae DNA. Other data collected on the day of the biopsy included standard demographic information and medical history, including any known history of C trachomatis or C pneumoniae. Physical examination (including joint count, evaluation for dactylitis and/or enthesitis, and skin examination) and HLA-B27 typing were performed. Synovial tissue (ST) samples from 167 patients with osteoarthritis (OA) were used as controls.
Twenty-six patients met the entry criteria and underwent synovial biopsy (25 knee, 1 wrist). Sixteen of them (62%) were positive for C trachomatis and/or C pneumoniae DNA (10 for C trachomatis, 4 for C pneumoniae, and 2 for both). PCR analysis of ST revealed the presence of Chlamydia significantly more frequently in patients with uSpA than in OA controls (P<0.0001). No specific clinical characteristics differentiated Chlamydia-positive from Chlamydia-negative patients. PBMCs from 4 of the 26 uSpA patients (15%) were positive for Chlamydia, and Chlamydia was found in ST from 2 of these 4 patients. No significant correlation between PCR positivity and HLA-B27 positivity was found.
The frequency of Chlamydia-positive ST samples, as determined by PCR, was found to be significantly higher in patients with uSpA than in patients with OA. Our results suggest that in many patients with uSpA, chlamydial infection, which is often occult, may be the cause.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: One hundred and thirty-four male and 32 female patients with ankylosing spondylitis and 33 women with pure ileitis terminalis Crohn were examined. The study protocol included a medical-rheumatological examination and thorough investigation for genitourinary infection. Urethroadnexitis was found in 37/134 male patients (2 patients suffered from balanitis, 17 patients from urethritis, 18 patients from prostatitis, and 2 patients from epididymitis), 15/32 female patients (11 of them had urethritis and in 4 cases urethritis associated with vaginitis) and 5/33 women with ileitis terminalis (every case with urethritis). The microorganism isolated most frequently from patients with genitourinary infection was Chlamydia trachomatis. The majority of patients with genitourinary infection were HLA-B27 positive. Nevertheless, the following conclusions can be reached: (1) evidence of Chlamydia trachomatis infection is frequent in male and female patients with ankylosing spondylitis, (2) patients with genitourinary infection tend to have HLA-B27, and (3) furthermore, presence of genitourinary infection was not significantly associated with chronic illness.
European journal of medical research 02/1999; 4(1):1-7. · 1.50 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Demonstration of chlamydial antibodies in patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) could show an etiological role of Chlamydia trachomatis in this condition. We studied serum specimens from 50 HLA-B27 positive patients with AS (Group I), 34 HLA-B27 positive patients with other rheumatic diseases (Group II), 67 HLA-B27 positive healthy blood donors (Group III) and 37 healthy untyped blood donors. (Group IV). Measured by an immunoperoxidase assay (IPA) chlamydial IgA (titre greater than or equal to 1:20) was more prevalent in the HLA-B27 positive persons than in the healthy controls not selected for HLA-group (Groups I + II + III vs IV : p less than 0.02). Chlamydia trachomatis IgA-IPA containing sera also had specific IgG-IPA antibodies (greater than or equal to 1:80) in 29 (96%) out of 30 sera from HLA-B27 positive individuals and controls. Conversely, 45% of specific IgG-positive (greater than or equal to 1:80) AS sera, 27.7% sera in Group II, 39.4% Group III sera vs. 11.1% of sera in Group IV had concomitant chlamydial IgA (greater than or equal to 1:20). The differences in the prevalence of specific IgA were statistically significant: Group I vs. IV : p less than 0.01; Group III vs. IV :p less than 0.05 and Gr. I + II + III vs. IV: p less than 0.05. Our data suggest an enhanced antibody production against Chlamydia trachomatis among the HLA-B27 positive individuals whether they have AS or are healthy.
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