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Q In patients with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA), does adding low dose prednisolone to the first use of a disease modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD) improve outcomes?
Clinical impact ratings IM/Ambulatory care ★★★★★★☆ Rheumatology ★★★★★☆☆
randomised controlled trial.
blinded (outcome assessors).*
Follow up period
6 centres in southern Sweden.
259 patients 18–80 years of age (mean age 55 y, 64% women) who were starting treatment with a first DMARD for active RA of ⩽1 year’s duration. Patients with previous DMARD or glucocorticoid treatment, low bone mineral density (BMD), or a history of fragility fracture were excluded.
prednisolone, 7.5 mg daily for 2 years (n = 124), or no prednisolone (n = 135). The choice of DMARD (mainly methotrexate or sulfasalazine) was at the attending physician’s discretion. All patients also received calcium, 1000 mg daily.
change in joint damage in the hands and …
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