Breast Cancer Drug Causes Arthritis… Why?

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Study Sheds Light on Aromatase Inhibitor Joint Pain Syndrome

One of the standard therapies for post-menopausal breast cancer, aromatase inhibitors (AI), can cause joint pain in patients, mostly in the hands and wrists. This pain can sometimes be debilitating.

Studies have shown that up to 15 percent of  patients on AIs discontinue their therapy due to pain. A study from the Hospital for Special Surgery presented at the American College of Rheumatology’s annual meeting provided insight into this syndrome. The investigators enrolled 35 post-menopausal women with hormone-sensitive, non-metastatic breast cancer who didn’t have arthritis.  Of the 35 women enrolled, 19 (54%) were symptomatic and of these 2 (5.7%) discontinued AI therapy.  Only one factor predicted whether women had pain — having later stage cancer.

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Can Biologic arthritis drugs  prevent stroke?

Data from a study of 158 patients with rheumatoid arthritis may slow progression of plaque buildup.  A prospective study from Johns Hopkins University revealed that the usual thickening

of plaque seen in patients with rheumatoid arthritis was lessened.  TYNF inhibitors, drugs often used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, by limiting inflammation, reduced the progression of carotid artery atherosclerosis by 37 percent.

 

If these findings can be confirmed, this is very exciting and welcome news for rheumatoid arthritis sufferers.

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Nighttime release prednisone… a good idea?

One of the reasons we don’t like to give prednisone in the evening is that it messes up the  body’s normal adrenal gland functioning.  Your adrenal glands put out more natural cortisone in the morning and less at night.  The feeling has been that nighttime prednisone messes that up.  A new study published in the Journal of Rheumatology looking at a modified release prednisone formula showed it didn’t interfere with adrenal gland functioning and may be a viable option for patients with rheumatoid arthritis.  Maybe good news…  Stay tuned.

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