All posts related to "rheumatoid arthritis"

Men with low testosterone more likely to develop RA

Couple walking side by side in the sandA study in the Swedish Malmo Preventive Medicine Program (MPMP) found that men with low testosterone were more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis. The study participants included 33,000 people born between 1921 and 1949. As part of the study, the participants underwent a number of tests, filled out questionnaires, and provided blood samples.

In the study, low testosterone levels are observed in both men and women with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Further study is required to determine whether low testosterone levels are to blame for the onset of RA, or it is RA that drops the levels of testosterone. Continue reading

Have you signed up yet?

Have you recently been recommended to START or SWITCH biologic medications for rheumatoid arthritis?

SuPER study bannerWe are looking for people with rheumatoid arthritis across Canada to test a new online tool that helps to make decisions about using biologic medications.

If you have been recommended to consider STARTING or SWITCHING biologics, we invite you to participate in this study.

You may be eligible if you:

  1. Have rheumatoid arthritis
  2. See a rheumatologist
  3. You are considering or reconsidering starting or switching biologics
  4. Have a valid email and internet access

This study can be completed from home or anywhere with internet access. Any information you provide will be completely confidential. An honorarium will be provided for your time.

If you would like more information, please contact Jasmina Memetovic, Research Coordinator by phone at 604-207-4007, toll free 1-877-871-4575, or email jmemetovic@arthritisresearch.ca.

Call for patient input on SEB etanercept for RA and AS

Stickman with megaphone calling for patient input

Call for patient input on SEB etanercept for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and ankylosing spondylitis (AS). Do you have RA or AS or care for someone who does? We need your valuable input.

Health Canada defines subsequent entry biologics (SEBs) as biologic medicines that are similar to, and would enter the market after an approved innovator biologic (such as Enbrel®).

Unlike the more common small-molecule drugs, biologics generally exhibit high molecular complexity, and are sensitive to changes in manufacturing practices. SEBs are not identical to their innovator products because their chemical characteristics cannot be precisely duplicated during the manufacturing process. Therefore, SEBs may have unique efficacy, immunogenicity, and safety profiles that are different from their innovator products.

The Common Drug Review (CDR) is currently welcoming patients and their caregivers to provide input to patient organizations on the manufacturer’s submission for SEB etanercept for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis or ankylosing spondylitis. The innovator biologic, or reference product, is etanercept (Enbrel®). Continue reading

Increased risk of chronic kidney disease in RA patients

A picture of a kidney in human hand

Image courtesy of Anusorn P nacho at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

According to a recent research study, rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients are at an increased risk for chronic kidney disease (CKD). Along with CKD, researchers also observe increased inflammation within the first year of diagnosis, corticosteroid usage, hypertension, and obesity.

In the study, researchers monitored 813 Mayo Clinic patients with RA and 813 patients without RA for 20 years. They found that RA patients had a one in four chance of developing CKD, while the general public had a one in five chance. “That might not seem like a lot, but in fact that’s quite a big difference, and it has important implications for the course of rheumatoid arthritis and for the management of the disease,” said Dr. Eric Matteson, senior author of the study. Continue reading

Canada’s first measures of performance in treating inflammatory arthritis

Performance meterA team of researchers has developed Canada’s first set of systematic measures for tracking how well or poorly health systems are doing in providing services to people who have inflammatory arthritis (IA), a potentially crippling disease that is on the rise in Canada.

The researchers developed six key measures for gauging access to specialist care and initiation of treatment for people with IA, a disease grouping that includes rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, and psoriatic arthritis. The work is described in March issue of The Journal of Rheumatology.

People who receive early diagnosis and start of treatment have a better chance of responding well and avoiding permanent joint damage from rheumatoid arthritis (RA), the most common form of IA. There is a growing body of evidence that early detection and treatment are also crucial to good outcomes for people who have other types of IA. Continue reading

Weight loss and gain in rheumatoid arthritis patients

Picture of a scaleA recent study published in the journal Arthritis & Rheumatology concluded that disease-modifying anti rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) may influence rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients’ weight. The study looked at four DMARDs, including methotrexate, leflunomide, prednisone and tutor necrosis factor inhibitors (TNFis).

Researcher Joshua F. Baker and his team at the Philadelphia VA Medical Centre in Pennsylvania assessed how primary RA therapies influence changes in body mass index (BMI). A low BMI is one of the adverse long-term outcome in RA and disease-related weight loss may be the result of RA symptoms or treatment therapy.

The team used three large administrative databases to identify 32,859 RA patients who received treatment with methotrexate, leflunomide, prednisone and TNFis. Researchers also assessed independent factors that may affect the study outcome, including the patient’s age, sex, race, BMI, seropositivity* for anticyclic citrullinated peptides (CCP), diabetes, current smoking habits, comorbidities, C-reactive protein (CRP) levels, interstitial or other lung disease, malignancies, history of myocardial infarction, chronic kidney disease, and other factors.

Here are the findings from the study: Continue reading