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Editorials |

The BeSt Way to Treat Early Rheumatoid Arthritis?

James R. O'Dell, MD
[+] Article and Author Information

From University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198.


Potential Financial Conflicts of Interest: None disclosed.

Requests for Single Reprints: James R. O'Dell, MD, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Nebraska Medical Center, 983025 Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198-3025.


Ann Intern Med. 2007;146(6):459-460. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-146-6-200703200-00014
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Over the past few years, the outlook for patients who are newly diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has improved dramatically (1) because of several key advances, including early use of disease-modifying, antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs); the use of DMARDs in combination; use of biologicals, especially antitumor necrosis factor-α agents; and recognition of the critical role of inflammation in the vascular complications that lead directly to death. Patients who are diagnosed with RA today are much less likely to become disabled, require joint replacement (2), or die of premature atherosclerotic disease, which is associated with RA-related systemic inflammation.

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