Background: Polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) is a relatively common rheumatic disease, particularly in the elderly. Vasculitis is associated with PMR and theoretically makes such patients susceptible to vascular events such as stroke. This study aims to explore the frequency and risk of stroke among patients with PMR through a population-based case-controlled study. Methods: The study included 781 patients with PMR from the Taiwan Longitudinal Health Insurance Database between 2001 and 2005. We randomly extracted 3,905 other patients, matched with the study group in terms of sex and age, as a control population. Each subject was individually tracked for a three-year period to identify those who had strokes. Stratified Cox proportional hazard regression was employed to evaluate the risk of stroke, after adjusting for socio-demographic characteristics and comorbidities. Results: We found that 386 out of 4,686 sampled patients (8.24%) had stroke during the three-year follow-up period, including 113 patients with PMR (14.47% of the PMR group) and 273 controls (6.98% of the control group). The stratified Cox proportional hazard regression showed that the adjusted hazard ratio of stroke for patients with PMR was 2.09 times that of controls (95% CI = 1.63-2.66, p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)497-503
Number of pages7
JournalCerebrovascular Diseases
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011


  • Polymyalgia rheumatica
  • Stroke
  • Vasculitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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