April 25, 2017
Use of tumor necrosis factor inhibitors and a higher dose of corticosteroids correlated with an increased risk for herpes zoster in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, according to recently published data from Japan.
PhD, at Tokyo Women’s Medical University, and colleagues assessed 1,987 patients diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) between 2005 and 2012 who met the 1987 American College of Rheumatology criteria for the disease. Of the 1,987 patients, 672 completed the fifth and final year of the study. Overall, 81.5% were women; the average age was 60 years; and the median disease duration was 6 years. For the 43 patients who developed herpes zoster, there were five controls matched by age, gender, comorbidity and observation start year.