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Drugs Can Ease Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis
Date:11/9/2007

patients with JRA. The injectable drug blocks TNF-alpha, a protein that causes the pain and tenderness associated with rheumatic disease.

In this study, 42 JRA patients took etanercept for four years, and 26 of them continued to take it for eight years. Reasons for discontinuing use of the drug included: parental/guardian desire to remove patient from the study; poor treatment response; adverse effects, and a doctor's decision.

The study found that 23 percent of patients reported a total of 39 serious adverse events, but the overall rate of serious adverse events didn't increase with long-term use of the drug. There were no reported cases of lupus, demyelinating disorders, tuberculosis, malignancies, lymphomas, or deaths.

"The drug had a sustainable efficacy profile with a very beneficial safety profile. Only one serious infection, pyelonephritis (a kidney infection), was observed in the remaining patients during the past four years," investigator Dr. Andreas Reiff, head of the division of rheumatology, Keck School of Medicine, University of California, Children's Hospital Los Angeles, said in a prepared statement.

More information

The Nemours Foundation has more about juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: American College of Rheumatology, news releases, Nov. 7, 2007


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