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Charcot-like arthropathy: A newly-recognized subset of psoriatic arthritis

L. Candia, M.L. Cuellar, S.M. Marlowe, J. Marquez, A. Iglesias, L.R. Espinoza


2006 Vol.24, N°2
PI 0172, PF 0175
Brief Papers

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PMID: 16762153 [PubMed]


The aim of the study is to describe a group of patients with a highly destructive and asymptomatic form of psoriatic arthritis, mimicking a Charcot-like joint disease.
We studied 180 patients with psoriatic arthritis and identified 4 patients with arthritis mutilans mimicking a Charcot-like joint disease. Clinical history, physical exam, and immunological testing were performed as well as X-ray of affected joints. Synovial membrane and sural nerve biopsies were performed and diagnosis of psoriasis was confirmed by skin biopsy.
Four patients with psoriatic arthritis mutilans according to Moll and Wright classification criteria (1) and Charcot-like joint disease were identified and evaluated. There were 2 males and 2 females, all Caucasians. The mean age ± SD was 57.8 ± 14.2 years. Mean arthritis duration ± SD was 6 ± 4.6 years and mean cutaneous duration ± SD was 13 ± 10.4 years. All patients had polyarthritis and a sudden onset of bilateral, painless, and highly destructive arthropathy involving large, non-weight bearing (elbows) and weight bearing (knees), and also small joint of hands and feet. Synovial membrane biopsy showed findings similar to those found in Charcot joint disease, including ischemic neuropathy.
A newly-recognized subset of patients with psoriatic arthritis and Charcot-like joint disease according to clinical, radiographic and histological features is described. The proposed neurovascular theory may explain the pathogenesis of this presentation.

Rheumatology Article