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A pilot study of IL-1 inhibition in acute calcific periarthritis of the shoulder
  1. Pascal Zufferey,
  2. Alexander So
  1. Department of Musculoskeletal Medicine (DAL), Service de Rhumatologie (RHU), Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV), Lausanne, Switzerland
  1. Correspondence to Dr Pascal Zufferey, Department of Musculoskeletal Medicine (DAL), Service de Rhumatologie (RHU), Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV), Av. Pierre Decker 4, Lausanne 1011, Switzerland; pascal.zufferey{at}chuv.ch

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Acute calcific periarthritis is a known cause of a painful shoulder. The calcium deposits are composed of different crystalline forms, including hydroxyapatite.1 Usually, these acute episodes are self-limiting. Current treatment approaches include non-steroid anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) and steroids.2

Microcrystals are capable of triggering interleukin (IL)-1 mediated inflammation.3 ,4 Therapeutic inhibition of IL-1 signalling has been shown to be effective in gout, and may have a place in the treatment of other crystal-induced inflammatory conditions.5 We have therefore investigated the effects of IL-1RA (anakinra) in acute calcific periarthritis in a pilot study.

Five consecutive patients (mean age of 60 years) were treated. They all had acute shoulder pain for <7 days and had not responded …

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