Rheumatology Update 2011 (ACR)

Health Care Comments Off

1. Treatment with hydroxychloroquine in SLE was significantly protective against the development (50%) of renal failure [Dr Michele Petri, Johns Hopkins University in American College of Rheumatology annual meeting 2011].
2. Monotherapy with etanercept can keep some rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients in long-term remission. Combination therapy with etanercept and methotrexate is considered standard of care for RA [Dr Roy Fleischmann, University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas at American College of Rheumatology annual meeting 2011].
3. Treatment with the oral Janus kinase inhibitor tofacitinib resulted in statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvements in all RA patient-reported outcomes [Dr Vibeke Strand, Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif.]
4. Treatment of early RA with glucosteroids provides relief of symptoms, but the therapy comes with a price – worrisome changes in body fat composition that are significantly increased within the first year [Dr Michael Nurmohamed, at Jan van Breemen Research Institute/Reade, Amsterdam].
5. Long-term treatment with the biologic agent etanercept reduces a RA patient’s risk of heart attack and malignancy, and may also reduce the risk of death, when compared with therapy using disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs [Dr Duncan Porter, of the University of Glasgow in Scotland].
6. Long-term treatment with the biologic agent etanercept reduces a RA patient’s risk of heart attack and malignancy, and may also reduce the risk of death, when compared with therapy using disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs [Dr Duncan Porter, University of Glasgow, Scotland].
7. RA patients try almost anything to relieve symptoms — including special jewelry, household oils and even homemade concoctions. Dr Ashutosh Tamhane, at University of Alabama at Birmingham, found that 76% of patients used store-bought lotions for treatment of RA, and 80% utilized heat treatments. About 21% of patients took fish oil supplements; 27% utilized jewelry such as copper chains; 19% tried garlic; and 4% took raisins soaked in vodka or gin for relief [American College of Rheumatology 2011].
8. A strategy of methotrexate-based tight control in early RA was more effective in preventing joint damage if the initial regimen also included low-dose prednisone. Among patients who received methotrexate plus prednisone, 78% were erosion-free at two years compared with 67% of those who received methotrexate plus placebo, reported Johannes W.G. Jacobs, MD, University Medical Center Utrecht in the Netherlands, and colleagues.
9. Even short courses of glucocorticoids in conditions such as lupus, RA and many other diseases can be associated with the development of osteonecrosis [Steven C. Vlad, MD, Boston University School of Medicine, at the annual meeting of the American College of Rheumatology 2011].
10. Patients with RA who respond well initially to methotrexate monotherapy may be able to maintain a good outcome on that drug alone, with no radiographic progression [Dr James R. O'Dell, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha]
(Source: Medpage)