Managing Cardiovascular Disease Risk in Rheumatoid Arthritis: Clinical Updates and Three Strategic Approaches
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The increase in cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is well known; however, appropriate management of this elevated risk in rheumatology clinics is less clear.
Purpose of Review
By critically reviewing literature published within the past 5 years, we aim to clarify current knowledge and gaps regarding CVD risk management in RA.
We examine recent guidelines, recommendations, and evidence and discuss three approaches: (1) RA-specific management including treat-to-target and medication management, (2) assessment of comprehensive individual risk, and (3) targeting traditional CVD risk factors (hypertension, smoking, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, obesity, and physical inactivity) at a population level. Considering that 75% of US RA visits occur in specialty clinics, further research is needed regarding evidence-based strategies to manage and reduce CVD risk in RA.
This review highlights clinical updates including US cardiology and international professional society guidelines, successful evidence-based population approaches from primary care, and novel opportunities in rheumatology care to reduce CVD risk in RA.
KeywordsRheumatoid arthritis Cardiovascular disease Risk assessment Hypertension Hyperlipidemia Smoking cessation
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Bartels receives peer-reviewed grant funding from Independent Grants for Learning and Change, Pfizer. Aimée Wattiaux and Ann Chodara declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any previously unreported studies with human and animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance
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