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Who gets giant cell arteritis (GCA)?

  • Giant cell arteritis (GCA) is very rare in people younger than 50.
  • It’s more common in women than men.
  • It’s more common in people of northern European descent than in people of other races. 
  • In the UK, 22 people in every 100,000 are affected.

GCA is quite often associated with a condition called polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR), which causes severe stiffness of the muscles, particularly in the shoulders and hips. About 15% of PMR patients also develop GCA, while 40–50% of people with GCA also have symptoms of PMR.


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