Effects of antirheumatic drug underutilization on rheumatoid arthritis disease activity
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Following the recommended guidelines is crucial for achieving patient remission in rheumatoid arthritis. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of proper drug utilization of antirheumatic drugs on disease activity and drug safety in Jordan.
In a retrospective cross-sectional study, patient’s demographics, clinical variables, drug regimens and side effects were recorded and the 28-joint disease activity scores were calculated. Patients were stratified into high, moderate, low disease activity or remission group.
Around 80% of patients were using methotrexate which was under-dosed in 82% of them. Only 25% were using biologic drugs. Surprisingly, only 10% of patients had low disease activity and only 4% were in a remission state. Anaemia (32.3%) and mild renal impairment (27.6%) were the most common side effects.
The low frequency of well-controlled disease activity is interpreted by high occurrence of methotrexate underdosing and biologic agent underprescription. Implementing the role of a clinical pharmacist could have a real impact on tight control of such disease issues in Jordan.
KeywordsRheumatoid arthritis DMARDs Biologic agents Disease activity Underdosing Underprescription Side effects
Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs
The 28-joint disease activity score
American College of Rheumatology
European League Against Rheumatism
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.
This work was supported by the Deanship of Research at Jordan University of Science and Technology. The contents of this publication are solely the responsibility of the authors and the funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
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