Our objective was to evaluate the relevance of traditional and disease-related cardiovascular risk factors and of bone mineral density for premature coronary artery calcification in young patients with systemic lupus erythematosus. Ninety-four female patients with systemic lupus erythematosus with disease durations >5 years and <45 years were consecutively selected. Cardiovascular risks (diabetes mellitus, arterial hypertension, dyslipoproteinemia, smoking, family history, body mass index, ovarian and renal insufficiency) and systemic lupus erythematosus-related risk factors (disease duration, ACR criteria, modified SLICC/ ACR, SLEDAI and treatment) were evaluated. Bone mineral density was assessed by dual X-ray absorptiometry. Coronary artery calcification was determined by computed tomography. Coronary artery calcification was identified in 12 (12.7%) patients and was associated with a higher frequency of patients with cardiovascular risks (p = 0.001), higher number of cardiovascular risks (p = 0.002), age (p = 0.025), disease duration (p = 0.011) and SLICC (p=0.011). Individual analysis of cardiovascular risks demonstrated that menopause (p = 0.036), dyslipidemia (p = 0.003) and hypertension (p = 0.006) were significantly associated with coronary artery calcification. In addition, coronary artery calcification was associated with a lower whole body bone mineral density (p = 0.013). Multiple logistic regression analysis using cardiovascular risks, age, disease duration, SLICC and whole body bone mineral density revealed that only disease duration (p = 0.038) and whole body bone mineral density (p = 0.021) remained significant for coronary artery calcification. In conclusion, we found that disease duration and decreased bone mineral density are independent predictors for premature coronary calcification in young women with systemic lupus erythematosus, suggesting a common underlying mechanism.