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April 21, 1978

Polymyalgia Rheumatica in Blacks

Author Affiliations

University of Southern California School of Medicine Los Angeles

JAMA. 1978;239(16):1612. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03280430028010

To the Editor.—  Polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) has been reported to have a predilection for whites.1 It was also stated, "There are no known occurrences in blacks, Orientals or American Indians."2 Two reports have since appeared describing the condition in a black woman3 and in an American Indian.4 More recently, Sanford and Berney5 described five cases of PMR appearing in blacks. The occurrence of PMR and biopsyproved temporal arteritis in blacks is even less common. To our knowledge, six cases have been reported in the literature.3,5Over a six-year period in a large urban hospital where a large proportion of the patients are blacks, we have treated three black patients with PMR associated with temporal arteritis. The clinical and laboratory features (Table), including the response to corticosteroid therapy, are similar to those reported in white subjects.1 We concur with others that this disorder can