Not Enough Veterans Get Folic Acid With Methotrexate

SAN FRANCISCO—Co-prescription of folic acid in patients receiving low dose oral methotrexate (MTX) is recommended because it reduces adverse events and prolongs the use of the drug. A study on PLOS One suggests, however, that not enough is known about… Read More

PsA Patients Not at Increased Risk of Mortality, Except for Suicide

PHILADELPHIA—What are the common causes of mortality in patients with psoriatic arthritis (PsA) compared with the general population and compared with patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA)? A report in the journal Rheumatology (Oxford) provided some answers.1 A study team including… Read More

Psoriatic Arthritis, Psoriasis Patients Have Increased Fracture Risks

PHILADLPHIA—Broken bones can be a risk for patients with psoriatic arthritis, (PsA) according to a study that looked at the risk of fracture and osteoporosis among patients with that condition and with psoriasis, compared with the general population and patients… Read More

Younger Veterans Much More Likely to Suffer Severe Pain Than Nonveterans

Younger Veterans Much More Likely to Suffer Severe Pain Than Nonveterans

Veterans, especially those serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, are about 40% more likely to experience severe pain than nonveterans, according to a new study.

Costs Higher When RA Patients Switch TNFi Therapies

How are clinical outcomes and drug/administration costs of treatment affected when VA patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) use tumor necrosis factor inhibitor (TNFi) agents?

Smoking Associated With RA Severity at VA

Cigarette smoking is a major risk factor for rheumatoid arthritis and has been associated with increased disease severity and lower rates of disease remission.

New Gout Classification Criteria Released Recently

The American College of Rheumatology/European League Against Rheumatism recently came out with new 2015 Gout Classification Criteria.

Evaluation of Allopurinol Use for Acute Gout Attack

SAN ANTONIO — Allopurinol traditionally has not been initiated during an acute gout attack to avoid prolonging the painful arthritis. Instead, the 2012 American College of Rheumatology Guidelines for the Management of Gout suggest that urate-lowering therapy can be started… Read More

Knee Arthroplasty Less Effective in RA, Compared to OA

OMAHA, NE — Total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is effective in reducing pain for patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) but not as much as with osteoarthritis (OA) patients, according to a new study. The report, published recently in the journal Arthritis… Read More

Women Veterans Have Higher Prevalence of Arthritis than Male Colleagues

Women Veterans Have Higher Prevalence of Arthritis than Male Colleagues

DURHAM, NC – While the commitment to physical fitness demanded of active duty forces can keep many ailments at bay, the rigors of service also bring an increased risk of arthritis and other rheumatic diseases, especially for young women entering (and exiting) the military.

PTSD Linked to Greater Risk of Autoimmune Disorders

SAN FRANCISCO — Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) creates greater vulnerability to developing autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, according to University of California, San Francisco, researchers. The research was presented last year at the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) Annual… Read More

Regular Alcohol Use Leads to Faster Rate of RA Joint Damage

OMAHA, NE — A dose-dependent relationship exists between alcohol use and radiographic disease progression in rheumatoid arthritis, according to a study led by researchers from the Omaha, NE, VAMC and the University of Nebraska Medical Center. The research, which sought… Read More

Less-Expensive RA Drugs Can Be As Effective As Costlier Ones

OMAHA, NE — Less-expensive combination disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) produced the same clinical benefits as much costlier biological treatment, according to a large VA study comparing the effectiveness of drug therapies for rheumatoid arthritis. Results of the 48-week study, which… Read More

VA Study – Stress Can Increase Inflammation and Worsen Cardiovascular Disease in Patients

By Stephen Spotswood SAN FRANCISCO — New VA research suggests that lifetime exposure to stressful events, such as those which cause PTSD, is linked to greater levels of inflammation in patients with cardiovascular (CV) disease. Higher inflammation generally leads to… Read More

RA Puts Veterans at Greater Risk for Heart Disease; VA Targets Risk Factors

Two recent studies of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have sent up a red flag for physicians caring for veterans with the disease; such patients appear to be at increased risk for cardiovascular disease due to inflammation and several other… Read More

Osteoarthritis More Common in Servicemembers, Presents Challenge for Military

Though most servicemembers are relatively young, osteoarthritis is a serious problem for the U.S. military. A recent study in journal Arthritis & Rheumatism found that military troops are more likely to develop osteoarthritis than civilians, and that arthritis is especially… Read More