Current Rheumatology Reports

, Volume 4, Issue 3, pp 218–225

Glucocorticoid use in rheumatoid arthritis

  • Kenneth G. Saag

DOI: 10.1007/s11926-002-0068-z

Cite this article as:
Saag, K.G. Curr Rheumatol Rep (2002) 4: 218. doi:10.1007/s11926-002-0068-z


More than 50 years after their discovery, glucocorticoids continue to be a mainstay of treatment for many patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Although the short- and moderate-term efficacy of glucocorticoids in RA is seldom debated, increasing evidence favors a disease-modifying role of glucocorticoids. Despite renewed enthusiasm based on this newer long-term data, glucocorticoid use is marred substantially by the potential for many serious adverse events. Glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis is one of the most predictable and serious complications for many chronic and some acute users. The correct identification of patients at high risk for bone complications and the institution of appropriate preventive measures may partially attenuate this adverse outcome.

Copyright information

© Current Science Inc 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kenneth G. Saag
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Clinical Immunology and RheumatologyCenter for Education and Research on Therapeutics (CERTs) of Musculoskeletal Disorders, University of Alabama at BirminghamBirminghamUSA

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