Pain management is a high priority for patients with rheumatoid arthritis, so three researchers in Australia analysed existing study data to see whether two different classes of drugs can help. When looking at muscle relaxants, they discovered that neither the benzodiazepine agents, diazepam and triazolam, nor the non- benzodiazepine agent, zopiclone, reduce pain when taken for one to 14 days. However, even this short use was associated for both agents with drowsiness and dizziness. When looking at neuromodulators, the researchers discovered weak evidence that using oral nefopam, topical capsaicin and oromucosal cannabis for one to seven days can reduce pain in patients with rheumatoid arthritis better than placebo. Each drug has its own set of side effects, but together they included nausea, sweating, dizziness, dry mouth light headedness, local burning and irritation.
A new study, funded by a grant from the National Institute for Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), found that two in five adults (42%) with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) were inactive. Taking measures to motivate RA patients to increase their physical activity will improve public health according to the findings now available in Arthritis Care & Research, a journal published by Wiley-Blackwell on behalf of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR). The ACR estimates nearly 1.3 million adults in the U.S. are diagnosed with RA, a chronic autoimmune condition characterized by systemic joint inflammation that can damage joints, impair function, and cause significant disability. Until the early 1980s, medical experts recommended medication and rest for those with arthritis.
Telomeres, the very ends of chromosomes, become shorter as we age. When a cell divides it first duplicates its DNA and, because the DNA replication machinery fails to get all the way to the end, with each successive cell division a little bit more is missed. New research published in BioMed Central's open access journal Arthritis Research & Therapy shows that cells from osteoarthritic knees have abnormally shortened telomeres and that the percentage of cells with ultra short telomeres increases the closer to the damaged region within the joint. While the shortening of telomeres is an unavoidable side effect of getting older, telomeres can also shorten as a result of sudden cell damage, including oxidative damage. Abnormally short telomeres have been found in some types of cancer, possibly because of the rapid cell division the cells are forced to undergo.
Researchers in Finland found that annual cumulative incidences of partial and total knee arthroplasty, commonly known as knee replacement surgery, rose rapidly over a 27-year period among 30 to 59 year-olds in that country, with the greatest increase occurring in patients aged 50 to 59 years. According to the study published in Arthritis & Rheumatism, a peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), incidences were higher in women throughout the study period. Osteoarthritis (OA) is a highly disabling joint disease that according to a 2002 report by the World Health Organization (WHO) is the fourth leading cause of years lived with disability worldwide. In the U.S., experts say more than 10 million adults are affected by OA and for those with advanced disease arthroplasty may be the only treatment option to relieve the disabling pain and stiffness, and improve quality of life.
Early, Aggressive Treatment May Help Reduce Symptoms And Improve Joint Function In Psoriatic Arthritis PsA
Medications or biologic agents that target T-cells, white blood cells involved in the body's immune system, appear to offer significant benefit to patients suffering from psoriatic arthritis (PsA), a type of arthritis that affects up to 48 percent of patients with the skin disease psoriasis, according to a new review article in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (JAAOS). About 7.5 million Americans - roughly 2.2 percent of the population - have psoriasis, an autoimmune disease that causes red, flaky skin. "Although these new immunosuppressive agents are expensive, they are the only agents that have demonstrated a decrease in radiologic progression of peripheral arthritis, and can be used to manage associated types of inflammation, as well as skin and nail disease, " said lead study author Michael S.