Why Are CVD-Preventive Rx Infrequently Initiated in IJD When Indicated?

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CVD-preventive medication is often indicated, but infrequently prescribed and started patients with inflammatory joint disease.

HealthDay News — For patients with inflammatory joint diseases (IJD), cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention medication is often indicated, but less often initiated, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Rheumatology.

Eirik Ikdahl, MD, from Diakonhjemmet Hospital in Oslo, Norway, and colleagues collected data on CVD risk factors for patients in a large IJD cohort. They estimated the 10-year risk of a fatal CVD event using the Systematic Coronary Risk Evaluation tool.

The researchers found that 53.2% of the 2,647 patients had indication for antihypertensives, and the proportion was significantly higher in RA and psoriatic arthritis (57.0% and 57.2%, respectively). Fifty-nine percent of those for whom antihypertensives were indicated received treatment, and half of those receiving treatment obtained blood pressure goal.

Overall, 24.1%  had indication for lipid-lowering therapies (LLT), which was comparable for most entities, except for ankylosing spondylitis (14.4 t; P < .0001). Of those with LLT indication, 55.6% had high CVD risk and 43.7% had very-high CVD risk. 

Half the patients with LLT indication received therapy; treatment rates were higher among those with very-high versus high CVD risk (P < .001).

“There is a huge, unmet need for CVD-preventive measures in patients with inflammatory joint disease who are at high risk for CVD,” a coauthor said in a statement.


Ikdahl E, Rollefstad S, Wibetoe G, eta al. Exploring the inadequate cardiovascular disease prevention in inflammatory joint diseases: Results from a nationwide Norwegian project. Presented at: the 2016 American College of Rheumatology/ Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals (ACR/ARHP) Annual Meeting. November 11-16, 2016; Washington, DC. Abstract #1477.

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