Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) are prone to develop fibromyalgia symptoms, according to recently conducted research presented presented by Perebetyuk L, et al, during the European League Against Rheumatism Annual European Congress of Rheumatology, held in June 2015.
A group of scientists assessed a group of 122 patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), diagnosed using the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) / American College of Rheumatology (ACR) 2010 criteria, the latter also being used to determine patients with concurrent symptoms of fibromyalgia. All subjects were examined for swollen joint counts (SJC), tender joint counts (TJC), and tender point counts during a rheumatologist evaluation. The researchers also measured the Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) and C-reactive protein (CRP).
The team used a 100-mm VAS and the Clinical Disease Activity Index (CDAI) to assess patients’ general health, and each subject’s functional status was assessed with the Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ)
It was observed that 24 of the 122 patients with RA (19.7%) met the ACR 1990 criteria for fibromyalgia and had 11 or more tender points. TJCs, VAS, DAS28, CDAI and HAQ scores were also comparatively higher in patients with concurrent fibromyalgia as well as RA, and most patients with fibromyalgia had a high disease activity (DAS28 of 5.1 and high CDAI). However, SJC, ESR and CRP were similar in patients with RA who did not have concurrent fibromyalgia.
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Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital recently revealed that weight loss in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) after undergoing bariatric surgery improves disease activity. The study was recently published in the journal Arthritis Care & Research and is entitled “Impact of bariatric surgery on patients with rheumatoid arthritis.”
The team concluded that substantial weight loss after bariatric surgery in RA patients could improve their disease activity, decrease serum markers of inflammation and RA-related medication usage. The authors believe that weight loss might be an important non-pharmacologic approach to decrease RA disease activity in obese patients.