One hundred and thirty-two patients with rheumatoid arthritis treated with gold have been studied for possible associations between HLA DR antigens and different adverse reactions occurring during such therapy. Patients possessing HLA DR3 had a significantly greater frequency of side effects than patients lacking this antigen. It was particularly noticed that DR3 positive patients on gold treatment had an 11 times higher risk of getting proteinuria than those without DR3. The lowest frequency of side effects was seen in DR7 positives. No significant differences between the DR antigen groups with respect to skin eruptions, liver reactions, or leucopenia were evident.
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