Rheumatology clinic

Antitumour necrosis factor alfa treatments for rheumatoid arthritis

Angela Fu, James Bertouch

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Abstract

These therapies represent an important development in the management of this common progressive inflammatory disease.

Article Extract

Rheumatoid arthritis is a common progressive inflammatory disease that can result in erosive joint damage, functional disability, and increased mortality comparable to that of triple vessel coronary artery disease and stage IV non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Epidemiological studies have shown that 30% of patients develop joint erosions within the first year and 70% within two years. Despite the early introduction of disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs), often in combination rather than as monotherapy, many patients continue to have active disease and to show progressive joint damage.

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