Acta Medica Iranica 2017. 55(6):375-380.

Assessment of the Prevalence and Risk Factors Associated With Glucocorticoid-Induced Diabetes Mellitus in Pemphigus Vulgaris Patients
Abbas Darjani, Nahid Nickhah, Mohammad Hassan Hedayati Emami, Narges Alizadeh, Rana Rafiei, Hojat Eftekhari, Kaveh Gharaei Nejad


Pemphigus vulgaris is a chronic autoimmune disease and glucocorticoids are one of the main treatments. Our study investigates the prevalence and associated factors of glucocorticoid-induced diabetes mellitus in these patients under different glucocorticoid regimens. 36 patients with first diagnosed Pemphigus vulgaris based on pathological and direct immunofluorescence findings who had received different glucocorticoid regimens (1-2 mg/kg oral or 1-2 mg/kg oral with 1g methylprednisolone pulse daily for 3 consecutive days with or without azathioprine) were evaluated during 2014-2016. Our study found that 22.2% of patients had impaired fasting glucose and incidence of corticosteroid-induced diabetes mellitus was 22.2% with no difference between oral and pulse therapy of corticosteroid. The first day after pulse therapy 19 patients of 21 had post bolus hyperglycemia that 36% of them became diabetic after 8 weeks. None of the variables, including age, BMI, HbA1c, LDL, HDL, TG, cholesterol, family history and blood pressure were associated with diabetes. Pretreatment FBS was the factor that would increase the likelihood of glucocorticoid-induced diabetes mellitus, 42.2% of patients with pretreatment FBS 100-126 developed diabetes in comparison with 17.2% in normal pretreatment FBS. Although the group who received azathioprine was associated with increased incidence of diabetes, the overall corticosteroid dose in this group was significantly higher than the other group (P=0.012), and controversy with other studies could be because of difference in corticosteroid dosage and small number of patients. The incidence of diabetes was not different between the group with glucocorticoid pulses and oral prednisolone without pulse therapy. Higher pretreatment FBS can be related to increased incidence of diabetes, but results from this study due to small number of patients are preliminary and multicenter studies are needed.


Glucocorticoid; Diabetes mellitus; Pemphigus vulgaris

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