Selenium status in relation to clinical variables and corticosteroid treatment in rheumatoid arthritis.


Peretz A, Neve J, Vertongen F, Famaey JP




J Rheumatol


Plasma selenium levels, erythrocyte selenium levels and activity of the selenoenzyme glutathione peroxidase in erythrocytes were determined in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and acute inflammatory arthritis. Results were compared with those from age and sex matched controls. These variables were not statistically different from controls in patients with inflammatory arthritis and in patients with RA not treated with corticosteroids. No correlation was found in RA between plasma selenium biological variables of inflammation and most clinical indices of disease severity. Therefore, acute or chronic inflammation was not the main factor that accounted for low plasma selenium levels in RA. Corticosteroid treatment, particularly at high doses (20-60 mg prednisolone/day), was significantly related to the depressed plasma selenium levels of some patients with RA. The mechanisms underlying this modification remain poorly understood.