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Psoriatic Arthritis Research Briefs: Etanercept, Bariatric Surgery, Joint Replacement

Psoriatic Arthritis Research Briefs: Etanercept, Bariatric Surgery, Joint Replacement

Keep up-to-date on the latest psoriatic arthritis (PsA) research with our brief research summaries. For PsA, Etanercept Alone Works Similarly to Combination Therapy When prescribing the biologic drug etanercept (Enbrel), doctors often add methotrexate, believing two drugs will work better than one. A recent study shows that for psoriatic arthritis (PsA), etanercept may work just as well alone. Examining data from 474 people who either received etanercept alone or etanercept with methotrexate, researchers found little difference between the two in in measures of disease activity or disability after 24 weeks. Source: Journal of Rheumatology, June 2016 Bariatric Surgery Eases PsA Symptoms People with psoriatic arthritis ...more
Gout and OA—What’s the Connection?

Gout and OA—What’s the Connection?

A swollen, stiff knee might immediately lead you to suspect you have osteoarthritis (OA), but the culprit could also be gout. Like many close relatives, the two conditions share common features. And because they often occur together, you might wonder which one is causing your symptoms. “It’s definitely possible for people to have both conditions at the same time. They’re the two most common types of arthritis,” says Svetlana Krasnokutsky, MD, assistant professor of medicine in the Division of Rheumatology at NYU Langone Health. “They can affect the same joints.” OA is a degenerative disease that gradually breaks down the cartilage that ...more
Making Smart Meat Choices If You Have Gout

Making Smart Meat Choices If You Have Gout

If you’re changing your diet to help lower uric acid levels and reduce your risk of gout attacks, meat choices can have a big impact. Some meats are high in purines.  Purines are substances found naturally in the body as well as in in foods. They are broken down in the body to form uric acid. When excess uric acid in the bloodstream builds too quickly or can’t be eliminated fast enough, it is deposited as needle-shaped crystals in the tissues of the body, including joints, causing intense pain.  So, a high-purine diet puts you at greater risk for uric ...more
Heart Diet Good for Gout

Heart Diet Good for Gout

A diet that’s best known for promoting heart health may also help gout management. The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, which emphasizes fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products, may lower serum uric acid (SUA) levels. In a study published in Clinical Rheumatology in March 2017,  research findings showed that the diet reduced SUA within 30 days, with a sustained effect at 90 days. In an earlier study reported in Arthritis & Rheumatology in August 2016, researchers reported similar finding in some cases. Gout occurs when excess uric acid builds up in the blood and ...more
FDA OKs Biologic for Psoriatic Arthritis

FDA OKs Biologic for Psoriatic Arthritis

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the biologic drug abatacept (Orencia) to treat psoriatic arthritis (PsA) in adults. It’s already approved for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and for one subtype of juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). Abatacept is a biologic medication that works by targeting T-lymphocytes (T cells), immune cells that are overproduced in people with inflammatory arthritis. The drug, technically called a “selective costimulation modulator,” attaches to the surface of the cells, preventing them from communicating with other cells and producing chemicals that can lead to joint damage and symptoms like pain and swelling. It’s given as a monthly infusion ...more
Heart Disease Risk May be Nearly Doubled in People with Psoriatic Arthritis

Heart Disease Risk May be Nearly Doubled in People with Psoriatic Arthritis

Doctors have long known that heart disease is more common in people who have inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and psoriasis. But they weren’t sure if this applied to psoriatic arthritis (PsA), which is more complex and not nearly as well studied. Then, in 2016, Canadian researchers published a meta-analysis of studies evaluating cardiovascular disease risk and PsA in the journal Arthritis Care & Research. The results suggested that people with PsA were 43 percent more likely to have or develop heart disease compared with the general population. PsA patients also had a 22 percent increased risk of ...more
Increasing Allopurinol Dose May Better Control Gout

Increasing Allopurinol Dose May Better Control Gout

In addition to being treated with medication for symptoms of an acute flare, should a person with gout be put on long-term uric acid-lowering medication to reduce future flares? And is it safe to keep raising the dose of the medication until uric acid drops below a specified target? Rheumatologists and other physicians are currently grappling with those questions, and a new study may help lead to some answers. What Is Gout? Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis in the United States, affecting more than 8 million adults. It develops in some people who have high levels of uric acid ...more
People with Gout at Risk of Premature Death

People with Gout at Risk of Premature Death

A new study found that people with gout have a 25 percent greater likelihood of dying prematurely than people without gout. The findings also show that this increased mortality rate has not improved over the past 16 years, unlike the mortality rate for people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Gout, which affects more than 4 percent of adults in the United States, is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis. It develops in some people who have high levels of uric acid in the blood. The acid can form needle-like crystals in a joint and cause sudden, severe episodes of pain, tenderness, ...more
Panel Recommends Aggressive Treat-to-Target Approach to Gout

Panel Recommends Aggressive Treat-to-Target Approach to Gout

An international panel of leading gout experts has published new recommendations advising that doctors use a treat-to-target approach for managing gout, a painful form of arthritis that affects more than 8 million adults in the United States. Central to the recommendations is using medication to reduce and keep blood uric acid levels below 6 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) – and even lower in people with severe gout. The recommendations were published online in Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases in September. Treat-to-target – a method in which doctors identify specific targets relevant to a disease and adjust medications until that target is ...more
Arthritis Foundation Launches Wipe Out Gout - Awareness Campaign

Arthritis Foundation Launches Wipe Out Gout - Awareness Campaign

It may come as a surprise that gout is the most common cause of inflammatory arthritis among adults in the United States.1 It’s also very painful, but gout can be a management disease - meaning there are several things people with gout can do to reduce flares, or eliminate flares all together. Being that gout is so common, yet not talked about that often we decided to create something to bring awareness to gout. To do that, we started a campaign, Wipe Out Gout, in partnership with the National Kidney Foundation. The message of our campaign of simple: Millions of people ...more