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PJ Online | News: Patients with rheumatoid arthritis survive longer if treated with methotrexate

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The Pharmaceutical Journal Vol 268 No 7192 p453-457
6 April 2002

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Patients with rheumatoid arthritis survive longer if treated with methotrexate

Methotrexate could have a substantial survival benefit among patients with rheumatoid arthritis, American researchers conclude (Lancet 2002;359:1173).

The researchers prospectively studied 1,240 patients with rheumatoid arthritis. After adjusting for disease severity, methotrexate was found to have a 60 per cent survival benefit for all-cause mortality compared with those who did not use methotrexate, and a 70 per cent survival benefit for cardiovascular death.

The researchers comment: "Our data indicate that methotrexate may provide a substantial survival benefit, largely by reducing cardiovascular mortality. This gain in life expectancy could be considered in selecting a cost-effective, disease-modifying antirheumatic drug on a long-term basis."

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