A recent study suggest that steroid use may be associated with fractures in early rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Researchers looked at the impact of systemic glucocorticoid exposure on fracture risk among new-onset rheumatoid arthritis by looking at administrative claims data between 2005-2012. The data provided detailed information about the treatments and outcomes of 42, 127 newly diagnosed RA patients.
From the data, researchers concluded that 85% of RA patients were exposed to steroids. Rheum Now summarised the research findings as follow: “Although exposed and unexposed patients were demographically similar, fracture risk was significantly higher at doses <15mg/day (5 to 9 per 1000 person-years), ≥15 mg/day (16 per 1000 PY), and with cumulative doses ≥5400 mg (13.4 per 1000 PY). Adjusted fracture risk was approximately 2-fold higher at highest dose levels compared with 0 mg/day current daily dose and <675 mg cumulative dose, respectively.” Continue reading
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease with hallmark symptoms of inflammation and resulting pain. It is a disease process (like cancer or diabetes) where the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks its own healthy joints. It is a relatively common disease-approximately 300,000 or 1 in 100 Canadians get it-and is often devastating to a person’s body if not treated properly.
The disease process causes swelling and pain in and around joints and can affect the body’s organs, including the eyes, lungs, and heart. Rheumatoid arthritis most commonly affects the hands and feet. Other joints often affected include the elbows, shoulders, neck, jaw, ankles, knees, and hips. When moderate to severe, the disease reduces a person’s life span by as much as a dozen years.
Below are ten rheumatoid arthritis symptoms, as listed in this WebMD’s article, that may indicate something more serious: Continue reading
Can Lyme disease cause arthritis? The answer is yes.
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According to WebMD, Lyme disease is a bacterial infection transmitted by a tick. The disease can enter the bloodstream if the tick bite is not treated within six months. It then becomes a chronic condition that causes fatigue, arthritis and cognitive difficulties.
Below are some symptoms of Lyme disease which may or may not develop in each case: Continue reading
Not according to recent findings.
Shingles is a major concern for people with autoimmune conditions, particularly people who are older and more at risk for developing shingles in general. Shingles is caused when the same virus that causes chickenpox, which stays hidden in the body, is reactivated.
This recent study focused on people with autoimmune diseases. The medicine to treat some of these conditions are called anti-tumor necrosis factor (anti-TNF) drugs. They suppress the immune system. As a result, they can increase the risk of some infections.
The new study looked at records for about 60,000 people with autoimmune diseases. It compared shingles rates for those who took anti-TNF drugs and those who took other drugs. There was no increase in shingles among people taking anti-TNF drugs. People taking high doses of another type of medicine called a corticosteroid had twice the odds of developing shingles.
Read more: Serena Gordon, HealthDay, March 2013
Juvenile dermatomyositis (JDMS) is an inflammatory autoimmune disease affecting approximately three in one million children.
Autoimmune diseases generally occur when the body’s immune system begins to malfunction and attack healthy tissue in various parts of the body, causing inflammation and damage. In dermatomyositis, muscle and skin are attacked by inflammation, but the joints, lungs, heart, and intestinal tract can also be affected.
Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) is chronic inflammatory arthritis developing in children under the age of 16 years. Previously called juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA), juvenile idiopathic arthritis strikes up to one in 1000 children and is one of the most common chronic diseases among children.