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Patient-centred management of inflammatory arthritis: more than just disease control

Louisa Chou, Andrew M Briggs and Anita E Wluka
Med J Aust 2017; 206 (5): 196-197. || doi: 10.5694/mja16.01248

It is important that patients’ broader health needs are addressed

Rheumatoid arthritis and seronegative spondyloarthropathies are the most common types of inflammatory arthritis. They cause pain, joint damage and progressive functional loss, which limit participation in life and constitute a significant disease burden.1,2 Over the past decades, great advances in management, with the availability of corticosteroids, synthetic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) and biological DMARDs, have significantly improved the disease control and outcomes. The guidelines, whose algorithms focus on drug prescription to achieve remission of disease,3,4 support everyday treatment. However, while they provide direction for the use of DMARDs, they do not consider the patients’ broader health needs.

  • Louisa Chou1
  • Andrew M Briggs2
  • Anita E Wluka1,3

  • 1 Monash University, Melbourne, VIC
  • 2 Curtin University, Perth, WA
  • 3 Alfred Health, Melbourne, VIC

Correspondence: anita.wluka@monash.edu

Competing interests:

Louisa Chou is the recipient of an Australian Postgraduate Award and Arthritis Foundation Scholarship. Anita E Wluka is the recipient of a National Health and Medical Research Council Career Development Fellowship (Clinical Level 2, no. 1063574). The results presented are based on a large systematic scoping study performed in partnership with Movemuscle, bone and joint health, which was supported by a partnership grant awarded by the organisation.

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