Methotrexate use linked to reduced mortality in RA

October 14, 2012
Methotrexate use linked to reduced mortality in RA
Use of methotrexate for one year or more is associated with a reduction in the risk of mortality for patients with rheumatoid arthritis, according to a study published online Oct. 8 in Arthritis & Rheumatism.

(HealthDay)—Use of methotrexate for one year or more is associated with a reduction in the risk of mortality for patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), according to a study published online Oct. 8 in Arthritis & Rheumatism.

Mary Chester M. Wasko, M.D., from the West Penn Allegheny Health System in Pittsburgh, and colleagues assessed the association between use and mortality in a cohort of 5,626 patients with RA, studied prospectively for 25 years, after controlling for individual propensity scores for methotrexate use.

The researchers found that 666 patients (12 percent) died during follow-up. There was a reduced risk of death with methotrexate use (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.30; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.09 to 1.03). The protective association between methotrexate use and mortality was not accounted for by selective methotrexate cessation immediately before death. The lower risk was only associated with methotrexate use longer than one year, with no stronger associations linked to longer durations of use.

"These findings have implications for the use of MTX in the treatment of RA," the authors write. "For patients in whom MTX monotherapy does not achieve complete control, add-on therapy may be more appropriate than switching to other medications, as MTX may still carry a survival benefit."

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

Explore further: Choice of psoriasis treatment affects CVD event rates

More information: Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Related Stories

Choice of psoriasis treatment affects CVD event rates

September 27, 2012

(HealthDay)—Compared with other anti-psoriatic therapies, systemic anti-inflammatory treatment of patients with severe psoriasis with biologic agents or methotrexate is associated with a lower combined risk of death, myocardial ...

Gastrointestinal perforation rare in rheumatoid arthritis

July 8, 2012

(HealthDay) -- Gastrointestinal (GI) perforation is a rare but serious condition that affects patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), most frequently in the lower GI tract, according to a study published online June 21 in ...

Recommended for you

Low vitamin D tied to dry eye syndromes

August 23, 2015

(HealthDay)—Patients with vitamin D deficiency should be evaluated for dry eye syndromes, according to a study published online Aug. 13 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

Yoga improves arthritis symptoms and mood, study finds

September 15, 2015

A randomized trial of people with two common forms of arthritis has found that yoga can be safe and effective for people with arthritis. Johns Hopkins researchers report that 8 weeks of yoga classes improved the physical ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.