Adverse Childhood Experiences Associated with Worse Disease Activity in Lupus Patients
In a new study published in Arthritis Care and Research, researchers found that adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), which can be defined as abuse, neglect, and household challenges, were common in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Moreover, the study concludes that higher ACE levels and presence of ACEs were associated with worse patient-reported disease activity, depression, and health status, but not physician-assessed measures. This study is the first to assess children with lupus and examine outcomes associated with trauma. These findings reinforce the need for prevention of ACEs and the promotion of clinical interventions in children who have experienced ACEs.
In 2003, the efforts of the Lupus Foundation of America and its national network of lupus advocates resulted in Congress establishing the National Lupus Patient Registry at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The Registry conducted the first comprehensive study to measure how widespread lupus is in the U.S. and determine who is at risk of developing the disease. This study on ACEs is an example of the ongoing work to come out of this Registry that continues to inform our efforts to combat lupus.