Prevalence of systemic lupus erythematosus in the united states: estimates from a meta‐analysis of the centers for disease control and prevention national lupus registries

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Peter M. Izmirly
  • Hilary Parton
  • Lu Wang
  • W. Joseph Mccune
  • S. Sam Lim
  • Cristina Drenkard
  • Elizabeth D. Ferucci
  • Maria Dall'era
  • Charles G. Helmick
  • Emily C. Somers

Colleges, School and Institutes


Epidemiologic data for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is limited, particularly for racial/ethnic subpopulations in the United States (U.S.). Leveraging data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Lupus Registry network of population‐based SLE registries, a meta‐analysis estimating U.S. SLE prevalence was performed.

The CDC National Lupus Registry network included four registries in unique states and a fifth in the Indian Health Service (IHS). All registries used the 1997 revised American College of Rheumatology (ACR) classification criteria for the SLE case definition. Case finding spanned either 2002‐2004 or 2007‐2009. A random effects model was employed given heterogeneity across sites. Applying sex/race‐stratified estimates to the 2018 Census population, an estimate for the number of SLE cases in the U.S. was generated.

5,417 cases fulfilled the ACR SLE classification criteria. Pooled prevalence from the four state‐specific registries was 72.8/100,000 (95%CI:65.3,81.0), 9 times higher for females than males (128.7 vs 14.6), and highest among Black females (230.9), followed by Hispanic (120.7), white (84.7) and Asian/Pacific Islander females (84.4). Male prevalence was highest in Black males (26.7) followed by Hispanic (18.0), Asian/Pacific Islander (11.2), and white males (8.9). The American Indian/Alaska Native had the highest race‐specific SLE estimates for females (270.6/100,000) and males (53.8/100,000). In 2018, 204,295 persons (95% CI:160,902,261,725) in the U.S. fulfilled ACR SLE classification criteria.

A coordinated network of population‐based SLE registries provided more accurate estimates for SLE prevalence and numbers affected in the U.S.


Original languageEnglish
JournalArthritis and Rheumatology
Early online date20 Jan 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 20 Jan 2021


  • Systemic lupus erythematosus, Meta-Analysis, Epidemiology, public health surveillance