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Journal ArticleDOI: 10.1093/RHEUMATOLOGY/KEAA457

Reporting items for capillaroscopy in clinical research on musculoskeletal diseases: A systematic review and international Delphi consensus

02 Mar 2021-Rheumatology (Oxford University Press)-Vol. 60, Iss: 3, pp 1410-1418
Abstract: Objectives The level of detail included when describing nailfold videocapillaroscopy (NVC) methods varies among research studies, making interpretation and comparison of results challenging. The overarching objective of the present study was to seek consensus on the reporting standards in NVC methodology for clinical research in rheumatic diseases and to propose a pragmatic reporting checklist. Methods Based on the items derived from a systematic review focused on this topic, a three-step web-based Delphi consensus on minimum reporting standards in NVC was performed among members of the European League against Rheumatism (EULAR) Study Group on Microcirculation in Rheumatic Diseases and the Scleroderma Clinical Trials Consortium. Results A total of 319 articles were selected by the systematic review, and 46 items were proposed in the Delphi process. This Delphi exercise was completed by 80 participants from 31 countries, including Australia and countries within Asia, Europe, North America and South America. Agreement was reached on items covering three main areas: patient preparation before NVC (15 items), device description (5 items) and examination details (13 items). Conclusion Based on the available evidence, the description of NVC methods was highly heterogeneous in the identified studies and differed markedly on several items. A reporting checklist of 33 items, based on practical suggestions made (using a Delphi process) by international participants, has been developed to provide guidance to improve and standardize the NVC methodology to be applied in future clinical research studies.

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Topics: Delphi method (52%)

6 results found

Open accessJournal Article
Abstract: OBJECTIVE To propose simple capillaroscopic definitions for interpretation of capillaroscopic morphologies and to assess inter-rater reliability. METHODS The simple definitions proposed were: normal--hairpin, tortuous or crossing; abnormal--not hairpin, not tortuous and not crossing; not evaluable--whenever rater undecided between normal and abnormal. Based upon an aimed kappa of 0.80 and default prevalences of normal (0.4), abnormal (0.4) and not evaluable (0.2) capillaries, 90 single capillaries were presented to three groups of raters: experienced independent raters, n = 5; attendees of the sixth EULAR capillaroscopy course, n = 34; novices after a 1-h course, n = 11. Inter-rater agreement was assessed by calculation of proportion of agreement and by kappa coefficients. RESULTS Mean kappa based on 90 capillaries was 0.47 (95% CI: 0.39, 0.54) for expert raters, 0.40 (95% CI: 0.36, 0.44) for attendees and 0.46 (95% CI: 0.41, 0.52) for novices, with overall agreements of 67% (95% CI: 63, 71), 63% (95% CI: 60, 65) and 67% (95% CI: 63, 70), respectively. Comparing only normal vs the combined groups of abnormal and not evaluable capillaries did increase the kappa: 0.51 (95% CI: 0.37 ,: 0.65), 0.53 (95% CI: 0.49, 0.58) and 0.55 (95% CI: 0.49, 0.62). On the condition that the capillaries were classifiable, the mean kappa was 0.62 (95% CI: 0.50, 0.74) for expert raters (n = 65), 0.76 (95% CI: 0.69, 0.83) for attendees (n = 20) and 0.81 (95% CI: 0.74, 0.89) for novices (n = 44). CONCLUSION This multicentre, international study showed moderate reliability of simple capillaroscopic definitions for describing morphology of capillaries by rheumatologists with varying levels of expertise. Novices were capable of distinguishing normal from abnormal capillaries by means of a 1-h training session. In future studies, the class not evaluable may be obsolete.

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78 Citations

Journal ArticleDOI: 10.1093/RHEUMATOLOGY/KEAB006
14 May 2021-Rheumatology
Abstract: We review the exciting potential (and challenges) of quantitative nailfold capillaroscopy, focusing on its role in systemic sclerosis. Quantifying abnormality, including automated analysis of nailfold images, overcomes the subjectivity of qualitative/descriptive image interpretation. First we consider the rationale for quantitative analysis, including the potential for precise discrimination between normal and abnormal capillaries and for reliable measurement of disease progression and treatment response. We discuss nailfold image acquisition and interpretation, and describe how early work on semi-quantitative and quantitative analysis paved the way for semi-automated and automated analysis. Measurement of red blood cell velocity is described briefly. Finally we give a personal view on 'next steps'. From a clinical perspective, increased uptake of nailfold capillaroscopy by general rheumatologists could be achieved via low-cost hand-held devices with cloud-based automated analysis. From a research perspective, automated analysis could facilitate large-scale prospective studies using capillaroscopic parameters as possible biomarkers of systemic sclerosis-spectrum disorders.

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2 Citations

Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.3390/DIAGNOSTICS11091606
03 Sep 2021-
Abstract: Introduction: Nailfold video capillaroscopy (NVC) is a useful tool for measuring capillary density (CD) and capillary morphology parameters and is mainly used in systemic sclerosis (SSc). Objective: We aimed to assess the prevalence of an SSc pattern and CD in different connective tissue diseases (CTDs). Methods: NVC was performed on 268 patients with CTDs. Control groups consisted of 104 healthy volunteers (HVs) and 36 primary Raynaud’s patients (PRPs). Results: Decreased CD was more prevalent in SSc, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), inflammatory myopathies (IIM), and overlap CTD patients compared with both controls. Average CD, the prevalence of decreased CD, and the prevalence of an SSc pattern did not differ significantly between SSc patients with (n = 39) and without (n = 50) overlap syndrome. An SSc pattern was significantly more prevalent in SLE (23%), SSc (82%), IIM (35%), and rheumatoid arthritis (17%) compared with both control groups. The prevalence of an elevated microangiopathy evaluation score (MES) was significantly higher in SLE, SSc, and IIM than in the HVs. Conclusion: The presence of another CTD in SSc did not influence CD or morphology. An SSc pattern may also be present in CTDs other than SSc. The MES is a useful instrument to distinguish between patients with CTDs and controls.

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Topics: Overlap syndrome (54%)

1 Citations

Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1007/S10067-021-05900-7
Abstract: Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is a systemic multi-organ disease. Raynaud’s phenomenon (RP) and digital ulcers (DUs) in SSc patients can be resistant to usual treatments. We studied the clinical benefits, capillaroscopy changes, and cost-effectiveness of local injection of botulinum toxin-A (BTX-A) and intravenous prostaglandin analogs (iloprost/alprostadil) in patients with SSc with resistant DUs. In a clinical trial study, we evaluated 26 patients fulfilling the ACR/EULAR SSc criteria with resistant DUs. Visual analog scale of pain and RP, skin color and type of ulcers, and capillaroscopy were assessed before and 1 month after treatment. In the first group, 20 units of BTX-A was injected at the base of each involved fingers by a dermatologist. In the second group, 20 µg iloprost or 60 µg alprostadil was infused daily. The cost of these treatments was compared. In 26 patients (43 fingers), there were 16 patients (22 fingers) in the BTX-A and 10 patients (21 fingers) in the prostaglandin group. In 95.5% of the BTX-A and 90.5% of the prostaglandin group, the ulcers were healed. In both groups, a significant decrease in pain was seen (p < 0.0001). Capillaroscopy patterns in both groups were not changed although the microhemorrhages disappeared significantly (p value: BTX-A: 0.03 and prostaglandin: 0.002). The cost was significantly lower in the BTX-A injection group (p < 0.0001). Both BTX-A and prostaglandins helped in the healing and pain control of DUs. In capillaroscopy, microhemorrhages were significantly decreased in both groups. In the BTX-A group, the cost was significantly lower as an outpatient treatment and was more time-saving. • BTX-A and prostaglandin analogs both contributed to the healing of digital tip ulcers and improving the pain • In capillaroscopy, microhemorrhages were significantly decreased or disappeared after both treatments • There was no significant side effect in both groups • Comparing both groups, in the BTX-A group, the cost was significantly lower when performed on an outpatient treatment and more time-saving.

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Journal ArticleDOI: 10.1093/RHEUMATOLOGY/KEAB668
31 Aug 2021-Rheumatology
Abstract: Objective In patients with Raynaud's phenomenon (RP), capillaroscopy is useful for discriminating primary from secondary causes. There are certain capillaroscopy and lab values as predictive factors leading to a known connective tissue disease (CTD). We conducted the present study to evaluate the causes of RP in our area and followed the studied subjects to find prognostic factors of becoming a definite CTD or remaining undifferentiated connective tissue disease (UCTD). Methods In this retrospective cohort study, we included all adult patients with RP who were referred for capillaroscopy from 2010 to 2019. All the patients with primary and secondary RP with follow-up were evaluated for demography, laboratory, and capillaroscopy to find the risk factors of their progression to a CTD. Results 760 out of 776 patients were included with 679 being female (89.3%) and 81 (10.7%) male. There were 660 subjects (90.8%) with secondary RP [mostly UCTD (48.2%) and then systemic sclerosis (SSc) (16.4%)] and 67 (9.2%) with primary RP; 109 patients were followed up and 42 (42%) of those with secondary RP developed a definite CTD. Scleroderma pattern and some capillary changes in capillaroscopy and/or positive Anti-Nuclear Antibody (ANA) had statistically significant differences for CTD transition. Conclusion We had a low number of patients with primary RP. The most prevalent causes of secondary RP in our patients were UCTD and SSc. Some capillaroscopy and laboratory results alone or in combination could be used as a predictive marker for the transition of the patients with UCTD to a CTD.

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17 results found

Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1371/JOURNAL.PMED.1000100
18 Aug 2009-PLOS Medicine
Abstract: Systematic reviews and meta-analyses are essential to summarize evidence relating to efficacy and safety of health care interventions accurately and reliably. The clarity and transparency of these reports, however, is not optimal. Poor reporting of systematic reviews diminishes their value to clinicians, policy makers, and other users. Since the development of the QUOROM (QUality Of Reporting Of Meta-analysis) Statement—a reporting guideline published in 1999—there have been several conceptual, methodological, and practical advances regarding the conduct and reporting of systematic reviews and meta-analyses. Also, reviews of published systematic reviews have found that key information about these studies is often poorly reported. Realizing these issues, an international group that included experienced authors and methodologists developed PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses) as an evolution of the original QUOROM guideline for systematic reviews and meta-analyses of evaluations of health care interventions. The PRISMA Statement consists of a 27-item checklist and a four-phase flow diagram. The checklist includes items deemed essential for transparent reporting of a systematic review. In this Explanation and Elaboration document, we explain the meaning and rationale for each checklist item. For each item, we include an example of good reporting and, where possible, references to relevant empirical studies and methodological literature. The PRISMA Statement, this document, and the associated Web site ( should be helpful resources to improve reporting of systematic reviews and meta-analyses.

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Topics: Systematic review (62%), Meta-analysis (51%)

22,678 Citations

Open access
01 Jan 2001-
Abstract: : The concepts of appropriate and necessary care are fundamental to the creation of an efficient and equitable health-care delivery system Evidence of inappropriate overuse and underuse of procedures has been documented even in health systems characterised by the absence of global budgets, capitation, utilisation review or the pressure of requiring a second opinion Health systems should function in such a way that inappropriate care is progressively reduced, while appropriate and especially necessary care are maintained or increased The ability to determine and identify which care is overused and which is underused is essential to this functioning To this end, the "RAND/UCLA Appropriateness Method" (here given the acronym RAM) was developed by RAND and UCLA in the 198Os It has been further developed and refined in North America and, increasingly, in Europe

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Topics: Health care (54%), Capitation (54%), Health care quality (52%)

1,674 Citations

Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1136/ANNRHEUMDIS-2013-204424
Abstract: Objective The 1980 American College of Rheumatology (ACR) classification criteria for systemic sclerosis (SSc) lack sensitivity for early SSc and limited cutaneous SSc. The present work, by a joint committee of the ACR and the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR), was undertaken for the purpose of developing new classification criteria for SSc. Methods Using consensus methods, 23 candidate items were arranged in a multicriteria additive point system with a threshold to classify cases as SSc. The classification system was reduced by clustering items and simplifying weights. The system was tested by (1) determining specificity and sensitivity in SSc cases and controls with scleroderma-like disorders, and (2) validating against the combined view of a group of experts on a set of cases with or without SSc. Results It was determined that skin thickening of the fingers extending proximal to the metacarpophalangeal joints is sufficient for the patient to be classified as having SSc; if that is not present, seven additive items apply, with varying weights for each: skin thickening of the fingers, fingertip lesions, telangiectasia, abnormal nailfold capillaries, interstitial lung disease or pulmonary arterial hypertension, Raynaud9s phenomenon, and SSc-related autoantibodies. Sensitivity and specificity in the validation sample were, respectively, 0.91 and 0.92 for the new classification criteria and 0.75 and 0.72 for the 1980 ACR classification criteria. All selected cases were classified in accordance with consensus-based expert opinion. All cases classified as SSc according to the 1980 ACR criteria were classified as SSc with the new criteria, and several additional cases were now considered to be SSc. Conclusions The ACR/EULAR classification criteria for SSc performed better than the 1980 ACR criteria for SSc and should allow for more patients to be classified correctly as having the disease.

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1,418 Citations

Open accessJournal Article
Abstract: Objective. To correlate microvascular abnormalities, evaluated by nailfold videocapillaroscopy (NVC), with the duration of both Raynaud's phenomenon (RP) and systemic sclerosis (SSc) from the date of diagnosis, in a large number of patients with SSc. Methods. Ninety-seven consecutive patients were recruited and distributed into 3 groups on the basis of the morphological NVC patterns observed: early (E), active (A), and late (L). In each group the age of patients, age at onset, and the duration of RP as well as of overt SSc were investigated and correlated with the different NVC pattern variables. Results. The early appearance of giant capillaries and hemorrhages (E pattern) is of great relevance for the early diagnosis of SSc. Therefore, these alterations are more evident in the active phase of the disease (A pattern). Conversely, the NVC observation of loss of capillaries and vascular architectural disorganization and the presence of ramified/bushy capillaries (L pattern) represents the clearest aspect of advanced SSc microvascular damage. These morphological alterations were found to correlate significantly with the duration of both RP and SSc, as well as with age of patients (p = 0.0001). No significant differences were observed when the variables were analyzed in the patients classified as having limited cutaneous SSc or diffuse cutaneous SSc. Conclusion. Classification of defined major nailfold patterns may be useful in assessing the appearance and progression of sclerodermic microangiopathy. As well, nailfold changes might represent a morphological reproduction of the evolution of SSc.

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527 Citations