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Effectiveness of anti-tumor necrosis factor agents in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis: observational study



Effectiveness of anti-tumor necrosis factor agents in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis: observational study



American Health and Drug Benefits 3(4): 266-273



The efficacy of anti-tumor necrosis factor therapies in rheumatoid arthritis has been demonstrated in randomized clinical trials. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the effectiveness of these agents for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis in a real-world setting. This retrospective chart review included patients from 6 clinics in the United States. Eligibility criteria included age ≥18 years, diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis, and having been initiated with anti-tumor necrosis factor therapy (ie, adalimumab, etanercept, or infliximab) between January 1, 2002, and November 30, 2004. Patients were assessed for up to 2 years after therapy initiation. Primary outcomes of interest were improvements in 4 effectiveness measures-joint pain, joint swelling, joint stiffness, and fatigue. A total of 496 patients met the study's inclusion criteria: 84 (16.9%) in the adalimumab group, 146 (29.4%) in the etanercept group, and 266 (53.6%) in the infliximab group. Improvement in 1 of the 4 effectiveness measures was documented in 36.8% (n = 25) who received adalimumab, in 47.7% (n = 62) of those who received etanercept, and in 48.7% (n = 115) of patients who received infliximab. The infliximab group was the only cohort to demonstrate significant improvements from baseline in joint pain, joint swelling, and joint stiffness. The adalimumab group had significant improvement in joint pain (P = .004). No significant change in fatigue scores was reached with any of these agents. In the real-world setting of patients with rheumatoid arthritis, anti-tumor necrosis factor therapy shows significant improvements in joint pain, joint swelling, and joint stiffness, although there are differences in effectiveness in the 4 measures among the 3 agents assessed in this study.

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Accession: 052842561

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PMID: 25126319


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