Ottawa, Ontario—A simple questionnaire can help clinicians track adverse events (AEs) and plan medication adjustments in patients receiving biologic drug therapy, according to researchers at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Ontario, who presented at the recent Canadian Rheumatology Association annual meeting. By Rosemary Frei, MSc
San Diego, CA—Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is associated with significant economic and clinical burden on the US healthcare system as a result of its growing prevalence, the frequent disability and reduced work productiv­ity associated with this chronic disease, and the overall impact on a patient’s quality of life. This clinical impact is directly linked to the increasing costs of managing patients with RA. In 2008, the average annual overall medical cost for a patient with RA was approximately $13,000. By Dalia Buffery
San Diego, CA—A recent report by the Institute of Medicine estimates that the treatment of noncancerous chronic pain costs the US healthcare system $635 billion annually. By Dalia Buffery
San Diego, CA—Specialty drugs have been gradually becoming the standard of care for many chronic diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and their costs continue to rise faster than the cost of traditional, nonspecialty drugs, according to Patrick P. Gleason, PharmD, Director of Clinical Outcomes Assessment at Prime Therapeutics, and colleagues. In 2012, drugs used for the treatment of RA had an average cost of $2251 per prescription, a 12.1% cost increase from 2011. By Dalia Buffery
It should be no surprise that medical practices have an obligation to maintain protected health information in certain ways, and to only use and disclose such protected health information as authorized by the patient or otherwise by law. Such requirements are set forth under the Privacy Rule. By Jennifer Kirschenbaum, Esq
Rituximab (Rituxan) is the most recent and the only treatment approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for antineu­trophil cytoplasmic autoantibody (ANCA)-associated vasculitis, but there is still a role for cyclophosphamide in these diseases, especially in patients with more severe forms, according to several researchers. By Wayne Kuznar
Ottawa, Ontario—Patients with ankylosing spondylitis who take tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors are 70% less likely to experience radiographic disease progression, according to a cohort study presented at the Canadian Rheumatology Association’s 2013 annual meeting. By Rosemary Frei, MSc
Researchers have sought to discover whether there is a plausible link between obesity and the development of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), with 2 large US studies finding no such evidence and 2 European studies showing significant evidence to suggest the link.
common comorbidity in patients with RA, renal insufficiency is caused by agents such as nonsteroidal anti- inflammatory drugs, disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs, and methotrexate. Some of these drugs may even have toxic side effects when used in patients with only mild renal insufficiency.
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