Background EAC was established in 2010, where we used protocol-driven rapidly escalating treatment with combination of conventional DMARDs. High remission rates (DAS28), achieved after 1 year of this treatment have been previously reported , but progression of the disease has not been analysed.
Objectives To analyse the results of radiological, functional and employment outcomes after 1 year of treatment in EAC.
Methods All patients had active early RA and went on rapid escalation of treatment protocol . Target of treatment was DAS28 < 3.2. Treatment was started with methotrexate, escalating the dose from 15 to 25 mg over 8 weeks. Then hydroxycloroquine, leflunomide and biologic agents were successively added if the target of treatment was not achieved. Patients were reviewed every 4-6 weeks. Radiographs of hands and feet, HAQ score, patient-reported impact of the disease on everyday activities and employment status were taken at the first visit and after 1 year of treatment
Results 79 patients have completed 1 year of treatment in the EAC. The female to male ratio was 1.7:1, and 78% of patients were seropositive. Disease activity and progression are shown in Table 1.
Conclusions After 1 year of targeted protocol-driven treatment of early RA with conventional DMARDs, the majority of patients reported only minimal impact of the disease on everyday activities, retained their jobs and had significant improvement of HAQ score. Only 18% of patients developed new erosions, and only 11% of them needed biologic drugs.
Semenova O et al., Annals Rheum. Dis. 2012: 71, S3, 205.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared
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