Author | Stephen A. Paget Md


Shared Decision Making for Early Arthritis: The Physician's Role

July 25, 2008

When and how choices were made and altered help determine the approach totreatment. Becoming an informed consumer helps a patient take control.

Early intervention in rheumatoid arthritis pays off

January 27, 2008

The outlook for patients with newly diagnosed rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has improved greatly, but many questions remain, including when to initiate therapy and what drugs to use. Recently issued recommendations for managing early RA include referring patients who present with arthritis of more than 1 joint to a rheumatologist. Combination's of drugs have been shown to be more effective than monotherapy. The tumor necrosis factor α inhibitors have revolutionized treatment, and other biologic agents are available for those who have an inadequate response. Making the diagnosis early often presents a challenge. Recently, a prediction rule was published for patients with undifferentiated arthritis of recent onset. The imaging focus for early arthritis has shifted from radiographs to ultrasonography and MRI. (J Musculoskel Med. 2008;25:70-76)