Background: Lupus erythematosus (LE) is an autoimmune disorder with diverse clinical manifestations ranging from mild cutaneous disorder to life-threatening systemic illness and associated with varying immunological parameters. Aim: We conducted a study in a tertiary care center of eastern India to determine the clinical pattern, immunological profile of patients with cutaneous manifestations of systemic LE (SLE) and their relationship with organ involvement. Materials and Methods: Fifty-five consecutive patients attending dermatology OPD having features consistent with cutaneous LE and fulfilling the criteria of SLE were included. After proper history taking and clinical examination, routine blood and antinuclear antibody (ANA) profile, histopathological examination, and direct immunofluorescence test were undertaken. Results: Among 55 patients, 49 were female. ANA positivity was the most common association, followed by photosensitivity, malar rash, arthritis, oral ulcer, immunological markers, renal system involvement, discoid rash, serositis, central nervous system (CNS) involvement, and least common being the hematological involvement. Vacuolar basal cell degeneration was the commonest epidermal change and upper dermal periappendageal and perivascular lymphocytic infiltration was the commonest dermal change observed on histopathological examination. On direct immunofluorescence (DIF) granular pattern was seen in majority of patients. Statistically significant risk of kidney involvement was present both when patient had bullous lesions and DIF positivity of unexposed (DIF-UE) skin. CNS involvement was seen in five patients and it was found to be significantly associated with purpuric lesions. Conclusion: This study reveals cutaneous lesions and DIF testing could be reliable predictors of systemic involvement and strongly suggests DIF testing, routinely in all patients of SLE.
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