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Response to: ‘The time has come to revisit alternative interpretations of data underlying the EULAR management recommendations for rheumatoid arthritis’ by Pirilä et al
  1. Josef S Smolen1,
  2. Robert B M Landewé2,
  3. Désirée van der Heijde3,4
  1. 1Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
  2. 2Rheumatology, Atrium Medical Center Heerlen, Heerlen, The Netherlands
  3. 3Rheumatology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands
  4. 4Rheumatology, Diakonhjemmet Hospital, Oslo, Norway
  1. Correspondence to Professor Josef S Smolen, Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna 1090, Austria; josef.smolen{at}

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The views presented by Pirilä et al,1 which focus primarily on the FINnish Rheumatoid Arthritis Combination therapy (FIN-RACo) trial, have been taken into serious consideration by the task force. Indeed, as extensively explained in the text accompanying the updated European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) rheumatoid arthritis (RA) management recommendations,2 several committee members referred to the references provided by Pirilä et al as well as other publications on this topic. The discussion also included comments that in some countries local societies recommended combination therapy with conventional synthetic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) (csDMARDs), and this is also mentioned in the publication. Nevertheless, after a long debate regarding csDMARD combinations, the task force arrived at …

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  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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