Kristian Stengaard-Pedersen

Positive predictive value of first-time rheumatoid arthritis diagnoses and their serological subtypes in the Danish National Patient Registry

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Purposes: To assess whether the positive predictive value (PPV) of first-time rheumatoid arthritis (RA) diagnosis registration in the Danish National Patient Registry increases when data are linked to the RA treatment codes and to assess the PPV of first-time RA diagnoses according to RA serological subtypes. Methods: Participants from the Danish Diet, Cancer, and Health cohort with at least one RA diagnosis, registered at one of the Central Denmark Region hospitals in the Danish National Patient Registry during the period 1977–2016, were identified. Register-based RA diagnoses were verified by scrutinizing medical records against RA classification criteria or clinical case RA. PPVs for overall RA, seropositive RA, and other RA were calculated for two models: first-time RA diagnosis registration ever in the Danish National Patient Registry and first-time RA diagnosis registration ever where subsequently a prescription had been redeemed for a synthetic disease-modifying antirheumatic drug. Results: Overall, 205 of 311 first-time register-based RA diagnoses were verified (PPV: 61.9%; 95% CI: 56.9–67.0). Regarding RA serological subtypes, 93 of 150 register-based seropositive RA (PPV: 62.0; 95% CI: 53.9–69.5) and 36 of 144 other RA (PPV: 25.0; 95% CI: 18.5–32.8) were confirmed. When register-based RA diagnosis codes were linked to RA treatment codes, the PPVs increased substantially: the PPV for overall RA was 87.7% (95% CI: 82.5–91.5), the PPV for seropositive RA was 80.2% (95% CI: 71.6–86.7), and the PPV for other RA was 41.1% (95% CI: 30.2–52.9). Conclusion: The first-time RA diagnoses in the Danish National Patient Registry should be used with caution in epidemiology research. However, linking registry-based RA diagnoses to the subsequent RA treatment codes increases the probability of identifying true RA diagnoses, especially overall RA and seropositive RA.

Original languageEnglish
JournalClinical Epidemiology
Volume10
Pages (from-to)1709-1720
Number of pages12
ISSN1179-1349
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018

    Research areas

  • Administrative database research, Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical codes, Danish National Prescription Registry, Denmark, Seropositive rheumatoid arthritis

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