Τo report outcomes of breakthrough COVID-19 in comparison with COVID-19 in unvaccinated patients with systemic rheumatic diseases (SRDs).
Patients with SRD with COVID-19 (vaccinated and unvaccinated) were included by their rheumatologists in a registry operated by the Greek Rheumatology Society in a voluntarily basis. Type, date and doses of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines were recorded, and demographics, type of SRD, concurrent treatment, comorbidities and COVID-19 outcomes (hospitalisation, need for oxygen supplementation and death) were compared between vaccinated and unvaccinated patients.
Between 1 March 2020 and 31 August 2021, 195 patients with SRD with COVID-19 were included; 147 unvaccinated and 48 vaccinated with at least one dose of a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine (Pfizer n=38 or AstraZeneca n=10). Among vaccinated patients, 29 developed breakthrough COVID-19 >14 days after the second vaccine dose (fully vaccinated), while 19 between the first and <14 days after the second vaccine dose (partially vaccinated). Despite no differences in demographics, SRD type, treatment or comorbidities between unvaccinated and vaccinated patients, hospitalisation and mortality rates were higher in unvaccinated (29.3% and 4.1%, respectively) compared with partially vaccinated (21% and 0%) or fully vaccinated (10.3% and 0%) patients.
Vaccinated patients with SRD with breakthrough COVID-19 have better outcomes compared with unvaccinated counterparts with similar disease/treatment characteristics.

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