Navigation Links
Rheumatoid arthritis takes high toll in unemployment, early death, Mayo Clinic finds
Date:7/1/2012

ROCHESTER, Minn. -- In the realm of deadly and disabling diseases, conditions such as cancer and Alzheimer's seem to attract the most media attention. But there are others that take a similarly high toll, and rheumatoid arthritis is one of them, Mayo Clinic researchers say. It is a common cause of disability: 1 of every 5 rheumatoid arthritis patients is unable to work two years after diagnosis, and within five years, that rises to one-third. Life expectancy drops by up to five years, they write in the July issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings in an article taking stock of current diagnosis and treatment approaches.

Rheumatoid arthritis patients also have a 50 percent higher risk of heart attack and twice the danger of heart failure, Mayo researchers say. Much progress has been made in recognizing the importance of early diagnosis and prompt and aggressive treatment, but gaps in understanding of the disease remain, say the authors, Mayo Clinic rheumatologists John Davis III, M.D., and Eric Matteson, M.D.

"There are many drug therapies available now for management of rheumatoid arthritis, but the challenge for patients and their physicians is to decide on the best approach for initial management and then subsequent treatment modification based on the response," Dr. Davis says. "In our article, we reveal our approach including algorithms for managing the disease that we believe will enhance the probability that patients will achieve remission, improved physical function, and optimal quality of life."

In rheumatoid arthritis, the immune system assaults tissue, causing swollen and tender joints and sometimes involving other organs. The top goal of treatment is to achieve remission, controlling the underlying inflammation, easing pain, improving quality of life and preserving patients' independence and ability to work and enjoy other pursuits. Long-term goals include preventing joint destruction and other complications such as heart disease and osteoporosis.

Dr. Davis and Dr. Matteson offer several tips and observations:

"It is very important to have rheumatoid arthritis properly diagnosed, and treatment started early on. Getting the disease under control leads to better outcomes for the patient, ability to continue working and taking care of one's self, less need for joint replacement surgery, and reduced risk of heart disease," Dr. Matteson says.

  • More than medication is needed to best manage rheumatoid arthritis. Educating patients about how to protect their joints and the importance of rest and offering them orthotics, splints and other helpful devices can substantially reduce pain and improve their ability to function. Cognitive behavioral therapy can make patients feel less helpless. Exercise programs that include aerobic exercise and strength training help achieve a leaner body; even modest weight loss can significantly reduce the burden on joints.

  • No treatment approach or guidelines can ever take into account every possibility; when a patient describes joint tenderness, fatigue and disease activity worse than the physician thinks they are, the physician should investigate the causes of symptoms. Non-inflammatory causes of pain such as osteoarthritis or regional musculoskeletal pain syndromes may be to blame.

  • Unanswered questions in rheumatoid arthritis include the relative benefits and harms of emphasizing initial treatment with prednisone; the effects of treatment on the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and other potentially deadly complications; and how to better predict how well treatments will work for specific patients and what the side effects will be.

"Our management approach is informed by current evidence and our clinical experience," Dr. Davis says. "We believe it is crucial that patients and their doctors thoroughly discuss the treatment options and decide on the management plan jointly in view of individual patient preferences, goals and values."


'/>"/>

Contact: Sharon Theimer
newsbureau@mayo.edu
507-284-5005
Mayo Clinic
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Lower GI problems plague many with rheumatoid arthritis, Mayo Clinic study finds
2. Treat Rheumatoid Arthritis Early and Aggressively: Guidelines
3. Gastro Woes Often Strike Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients
4. Mayo Clinic: Obesity epidemic fueling rise in rheumatoid arthritis among women
5. Rising Obesity Rates Might Mean More Rheumatoid Arthritis
6. Regulatory immune cell diversity tempers autoimmunity in rheumatoid arthritis
7. Scientists identify new target to battle rheumatoid arthritis
8. Mayo Clinic: Standard heart disease risk tools underrate danger in rheumatoid arthritis
9. Early menopause predicts a milder form of rheumatoid arthritis
10. Smoking negatively affects response to anti-TNF treatment in patients with rheumatoid arthritis
11. Menopausal Age May Affect Rheumatoid Arthritis Severity
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/11/2016)... Whippany, New Jersey (PRWEB) , ... February 11, 2016 , ... ... invited to a free CEU seminar titled, “Stroke Management: Time to Act, Time to ... Senior Housing Community in Whippany, N.J. The presenter is Vishal Chedda, president of ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... February 11, 2016 , ... The president released a FY 2017 budget request ... shift more of the cost burden to military beneficiaries. , MOAA’s president, retired ... defense budget as including limited quantifiable benefit fixes mixed with numerous beneficiary fee hikes. ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... February 11, 2016 , ... In a new ... plastic surgeon , Dr. Rod J. Rohrich, and colleagues, examine and underscore the ... recommendations for rhinoplasty surgeons when addressing this vital area. , The upper lateral ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 11, 2016 , ... ... of J.R. Garrett Esq. as General Counsel. Garrett will focus on contract negotiations, ... and audits, privacy and security law, and best practices in data breaches for ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... 11, 2016 , ... Talix today announced that Clive Fields, ... presenting at the 2016 HIMSS Annual Conference & Exhibition, taking place February 29 ... “ Coding for Care: Using Data Analytics for Risk Adjustment ,” Dr. Fields ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016  Delcath Systems, ... and medical device company focused on oncology with ... metastatic liver cancers, announces the engagement of ... Company,s Global Medical Consultant. Dr. Birgerson will provide ... Company,s clinical operations team to help ensure timely ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... 11, 2016 SI-BONE, Inc., a medical ... iFuse Implant System, a minimally invasive surgical (MIS) ... the sacroiliac (SI) joint, announced the publication of ... MIS SI joint fusion for patients suffering from ... or SI joint disruption.  In the first article, ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... Inc. (NASDAQ: IONS ) announced today that it will ... a.m. Eastern Time to discuss its 2015 financial results and ... . A webcast replay will be available for a limited ... A webcast replay will be available for a limited time ... listen to the call by dialing 877-443-5662 or access the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: