No additional risk from COVID-19 for people with rheumatic diseases taking biologics and JAK inhibitors

There is no need for withdrawal of DMARDs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Introduction COVID-19 is caused by a new type of coronavirus called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2). It was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization on 11 March 2020. COVID-19 has forced people to change their behaviours to try to limit […]

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Lymphoma risk in RA is more dependent on the underlying disease than use of bDMARD treatments

There is no evidence that using bDMARDS to treat rheumatoid arthritis has an effect on the type of lymphoma that people might get INTRODUCTION Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects a person’s joints, causing pain and disability. It can also affect internal organs. Rheumatoid arthritis affects women more frequently than men. Lymphoma […]

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Women can continue certolizumab during breastfeeding

Only very small amounts of certolizumab cross into human breastmilk. INTRODUCTION Chronic inflammatory diseases include rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, axial spondyloarthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and Crohn’s disease. These diseases often affect women in their childbearing years, and many experience their disease getting worse after their baby is born. Treatment of these conditions often uses biologic drugs […]

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Biologics should be compared to the highest possible dose of methotrexate

Some drugs work better at higher doses. Traditionally, studies designed to show that biologic drugs are better than methotrexate have not used the highest possible dose of methotrexate to compare against. INTRODUCTION Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects a person’s joints, causing pain and disability. It can also affect internal organs. Rheumatoid […]

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Treatment-free remission may soon be a realistic goal in rheumatoid arthritis

Tapering and sometimes discontinuation of DMARDS is possible in people with rheumatoid arthritis who achieve sustained remission, hinting at the possibility that the disease could be cured. INTRODUCTION Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease that causes pain and disability. It can also affect internal organs. Rheumatoid arthritis is more common in older people, but […]

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In RA, etanercept can usually not be stopped, but in some patients who are doing well the dose may be reduced

Rheumatoid arthritis patients who have stable and improved symptoms should continue long-term maintenance treatment on full- or low-dose etanercept. INTRODUCTION Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects a person’s joints and sometimes their internal organs, causing pain and disability. Etanercept is one of a group of medicines called biologics that are used to […]

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New drug atacicept may help to prevent SLE flares

High-dose atacicept prevented disease flares, although there were some safety concerns. INTRODUCTION Systemic lupus erythematosus (also known as SLE or lupus) is an autoimmune disease. It typically starts in women between the ages of 15 and 45, but can affect both genders. The cause of SLE is not known, and symptoms can vary from patient […]

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Short-term biologic treatment does not affect immune response to vaccination

Patients with rheumatoid arthritis should be up to date with routine vaccinations before beginning treatment with biologic medicines. INTRODUCTION Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects a person’s joints, causing pain and disability. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis naturally have an increased risk of developing infections due to the underlying disease, as well as […]

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