Rheumatology International

, Volume 30, Issue 2, pp 193–198

Long-term anti-tumour necrosis factor therapy reverses the progression of carotid intima–media thickness in female patients with active rheumatoid arthritis

  • A. Ferrante
  • A. R. Giardina
  • F. Ciccia
  • G. Parrinello
  • G. Licata
  • G. Avellone
  • E. Giardina
  • R. Impastato
  • Giovanni Triolo
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00296-009-0935-2

Cite this article as:
Ferrante, A., Giardina, A.R., Ciccia, F. et al. Rheumatol Int (2009) 30: 193. doi:10.1007/s00296-009-0935-2

Abstract

The objective of the study is to evaluate the effect of TNF inhibition on carotid thickness over a 2-year period. 144 women with RA diagnosed according to ACR criteria, without clinical evidence of cardiac and/or vascular disease were enrolled and compared with 78 matched controls. All patients received methotrexate (15–20 mg weekly) for 3 months. Responders (n = 79) continued to be treated with methotrexate, non-responders (n = 40) moved to methotrexate plus a TNF alpha antagonist. Echosonographic studies of carotids were obtained before and after 2-year follow-up. A significant decrease of ca-IMT was observed in anti-TNF-treated patients (P < 0.001); on the other hand, no significant variation of ca-IMT was observed after 2 years in MTX-treated patients. Our study indicates that anti-TNF blocking agents, but not methotrexate, are capable of reducing IMT of carotid arteries in female RA patients in a 2-year follow-up.

Keywords

Rheumatoid arthritisTNFDMARDsAtherosclerosis

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Ferrante
    • 1
  • A. R. Giardina
    • 1
  • F. Ciccia
    • 1
  • G. Parrinello
    • 2
  • G. Licata
    • 2
  • G. Avellone
    • 2
  • E. Giardina
    • 1
  • R. Impastato
    • 1
  • Giovanni Triolo
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal MedicineUniversity of PalermoPalermoItaly
  2. 2.Division of Medicine, Department of Internal MedicineUniversity of PalermoPalermoItaly
  3. 3.Cattedra e Unità Operativa di ReumatologiaPoliclinico UniversitarioPalermoItaly