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Associated factors with interstitial lung disease and health-related quality of life in Chinese patients with primary Sjögren’s syndrome



The main purpose of this study was to investigate the current situation of primary Sjögren’s syndrome (pSS) patients with interstitial lung disease (ILD) in China. The relationships between social demography, disease activity, psychological status, clinical variables, and ILD were analyzed. Besides that, the quality of life (QoL) in pSS with ILD was also analyzed.


In the cross-sectional study, 101 pSS patients participated in this study. Under the guidance of the researchers, the European League Against Rheumatism Sjögren’s Syndrome Disease Activity Index (ESSDAI), EULAR Sjögren’s Syndrome Patient-Reported Index (ESSPRI), the Short-Form 36 health survey (SF-36), Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), Pittsburgh sleep quality index (PSQI), Summated Xerostomia Inventory (SXI), and other related questionnaires were completed. Independent sample t tests, Mann-Whitney U test, chi-square test, and correlational analysis were used.


The data showed that 28 (30.1%) pSS people with ILD. The occurrence and development of ILD were associated with disease duration, fatigue, alanine aminotransferase (ALT), neutrophils, albumin, and use of hormone. The survey also found that the QoL of pSS-ILD was significantly lower than non-ILD, especially the score in the dimension of role physical function.


ILD was very common in pSS. ILD had a significant negative impact on the QoL of patients. Therefore, it is of great significance to strengthen the early intervention and drug treatment of pSS patients to prevent ILD and improve their QoL.

Key Points
This cross-sectional study finds that the incidence of ILD in patients with pSS is 30.1%.
The occurrence and development of ILD is associated with disease duration, fatigue, alanine aminotransferase (ALT), neutrophils, albumin, and use of hormone.
The study also finds that the QoL of pSS-ILD is significantly lower than in patients with non-ILD, especially the score in the dimension of role physical function.

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The authors want to thank Wei Zhou, Jiaxin Guo, Mei He Ping Li, and Jianlin Gao for their assistance with this paper.


This work was supported by the Postgraduate Research and Practice Innovation Program of Jiangsu Province (grant number KYCX19-2071), National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant number 81671616 and 81871278), Science and technology Project of Jiangsu Province (grant number BE2018671), and Research Center of Gerontology and Longevity, Affiliated Hospital of Nantong University, Nantong (grant number HS2018004).

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Correspondence to Zhifeng Gu or Chen Dong.

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The Ethics Committee of the Affiliated Hospital of Nantong University approved this study (ethics approval number: 2017-K003).

All participants obtained informed consent in the study.



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Zhao, R., Wang, Y., Zhou, W. et al. Associated factors with interstitial lung disease and health-related quality of life in Chinese patients with primary Sjögren’s syndrome. Clin Rheumatol 39, 483–489 (2020).

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  • China
  • Interstitial lung disease
  • Primary Sjögren’s syndrome
  • Quality of life