Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Using tumor necrosis factor inhibitors decreases risk of heart attacks in rheumatoid arthritis patients

Date:
October 27, 2013
Source:
American College of Rheumatology (ACR)
Summary:
Rheumatoid arthritis patients who use tumor necrosis factor inhibitors (called Anti-TNFs) to control their disease-related inflammation also have a decreased risk for heart attacks, according to new research.

Rheumatoid arthritis patients who use tumor necrosis factor inhibitors (called Anti-TNFs) to control their disease-related inflammation also have a decreased risk for heart attacks, according to research findings presented this week at the American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting in San Diego.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic disease that causes pain, stiffness, swelling, and limitation in the motion and function of multiple joints. Though joints are the principal body parts affected by RA, inflammation can develop in other organs as well. An estimated 1.3 million Americans have RA, and the disease typically affects women twice as often as men.

Patients with RA also have an increased risk of heart attacks, possibly due to the inflammation associated with the disease. Researchers recently investigated whether or not anti-TNFs, which help to control RA inflammation, would lower the risk and severity of heart attacks in these patients compared to traditional, non-biologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs, or DMARDs.

"The British Society for Rheumatology Biologics Register was established in 2001 to monitor the long-term safety of biologic therapies in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Information has been collected on over 20,000 UK patients, including data on all hospital admissions and deaths. Whilst established to examine possible safety issues with biologic therapies, it provides the opportunity to look at additional benefits beyond the direct effect on disease severity," explains William Dixon, MD, MRC clinician scientist/ senior clinical lecturer and honorary consultant rheumatologist; Arthritis Research UK Epidemiology Unit, The University of Manchester; and an investigator in the study. "Linkage to a national audit of myocardial infarctions [heart attacks] allowed us to examine not only the rate of heart attacks, but uniquely whether the severity of heart attacks was different following biologic treatment. Better control of inflammation with biologic therapy might reduce not only the rate of heart attacks, but potentially also affect the size of myocardial infarctions."

The researchers analyzed data regarding the rate of heart attacks in a total of 14,258 RA patients from 2001 to 2008. The researchers used linked data from two existing UK studies on the safety of biologic agent use in treating RA and a national database of heart attack-related hospitalizations in England and Wales. Using data from the biologic agent study, they identified 252 verifiable first heart attack among these patients, including 58 in 3,058 patients using traditional DMARDs and 194 in 11,200 patients using biologic agents. When the additional data from the hospitalization study was taken into account, they identified 143 heart attacks, including 35 in the DMARD group and 108 in the biologic group. The rate of heart attacks was lower in the biologic group, generating an adjusted hazard ratio of heart attacks of 0.61 in the tumor necrosis factor group compared to the DMARD group.

The researchers concluded that the RA patients using biologic agents to manage their inflammation had a lower risk of heart attacks than those who used traditional DMARDs. However, the severity of the heart attacks between the two groups was statistically similar.

"Rheumatologists can be reassured that treatment of active rheumatoid arthritis with anti-TNF therapy may lead not just to an improvement in joint symptoms, but also a reduction in the rate of myocardial infarctions in the medium term," says Dr. Dixon

Patients should talk to their rheumatologists to determine their best course of treatment.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American College of Rheumatology (ACR). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American College of Rheumatology (ACR). "Using tumor necrosis factor inhibitors decreases risk of heart attacks in rheumatoid arthritis patients." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 October 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131027122919.htm>.
American College of Rheumatology (ACR). (2013, October 27). Using tumor necrosis factor inhibitors decreases risk of heart attacks in rheumatoid arthritis patients. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131027122919.htm
American College of Rheumatology (ACR). "Using tumor necrosis factor inhibitors decreases risk of heart attacks in rheumatoid arthritis patients." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131027122919.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

AFP (July 24, 2014) America's death penalty debate raged Thursday after it took nearly two hours for Arizona to execute a prisoner who lost a Supreme Court battle challenging the experimental lethal drug cocktail. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) A study by German researchers claims watching TV while you're stressed out can make you feel guilty and like a failure. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins