Maradit-Kremers H, Crowson CS, Nicola PJ et alIncreased unrecognized coronary heart disease and sudden deaths in rheumatoid arthritis: a population-based cohort study. Arthritis Rheum 52:402-411

Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota 55905, USA.
Arthritis & Rheumatology (Impact Factor: 7.76). 02/2005; 52(2):402-11. DOI: 10.1002/art.20853
Source: PubMed


To examine the risk of clinical coronary heart disease (CHD) in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) compared with age- and sex-matched non-RA subjects, and to determine whether RA is a risk factor for CHD after accounting for traditional CHD risk factors.
We assembled a population-based incidence cohort of 603 Rochester, Minnesota residents ages >or=18 years who first fulfilled the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) 1987 criteria for RA between January 1, 1955 and January 1, 1995, and 603 age- and sex-matched non-RA subjects. All subjects were followed up through their complete inpatient and outpatient medical records, beginning at age 18 years until death, migration, or January 1, 2001. Data were collected on CHD events and traditional CHD risk factors (diabetes mellitus, hypertension, dyslipidemia, body mass index, smoking) using established diagnostic criteria. CHD events included hospitalized myocardial infarction (MI), unrecognized MI, coronary revascularization procedures, angina pectoris, and sudden CHD deaths. Conditional logistic regression and Cox regression models were used to estimate the risk of CHD associated with RA, both prior to and following RA diagnosis, after adjusting for CHD risk factors.
During the 2-year period immediately prior to fulfillment of the ACR criteria, RA patients were significantly more likely to have been hospitalized for acute MI (odds ratio [OR] 3.17, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 1.16-8.68) or to have experienced unrecognized MIs (OR 5.86, 95% CI 1.29-26.64), and less likely to have a history of angina pectoris (OR 0.58, 95% CI 0.34-0.99) compared with non-RA subjects. After the RA incidence date, RA patients were twice as likely to experience unrecognized MIs (hazard ratio [HR] 2.13, 95% CI 1.13-4.03) and sudden deaths (HR 1.94, 95% CI 1.06-3.55) and less likely to undergo coronary artery bypass grafting (HR 0.36, 95% CI 0.16-0.80) compared with non-RA subjects. Adjustment for the CHD risk factors did not substantially change the risk estimates.
Patients with RA have a significantly higher risk of CHD when compared with non-RA subjects. RA patients are less likely to report symptoms of angina and more likely to experience unrecognized MI and sudden cardiac death. The risk of CHD in RA patients precedes the ACR criteria-based diagnosis of RA, and the risk cannot be explained by an increased incidence of traditional CHD risk factors in RA patients.

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Available from: Paulo J Nicola
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    • "However, there is a trend towards certain site-specific cancers, such as lymphoma[26,27]and lung cancer[26,28], being more common in patients with RA. It has been shown that morbidity[16,29]and premature mortality[3,4,30]due to CVD is increased in RA patients in comparison to population rates. Several studies during the past decade have demonstrated a link between inflammation and the development of CVD in patients with RA313233. "
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    ABSTRACT: Patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) suffer from co-morbidities that contribute to a shortened lifespan. Inflammation is important for the development of cardiovascular disease, but little is known on its relationship with other co-morbidities. We investigated the role of inflammation for the development of new comorbidities in early RA. Since 1995, all patients with early RA in Northern Sweden are included in a prospective study on co-morbidities, with a total of 950 patients being included. At the time for this study, 726 had been ill for ≥5 years. Data on co-morbidities, clinical and laboratory disease activity and pharmacological therapy were collected from patient records and further validated using a questionnaire at RA onset (T0) and after 5 years (T5). Of the patients, 53.2 % of the patients had one or more co-morbidity at onset, the commonest being: hypertension (27.3 %), obstructive pulmonary disease (13.9 %), diabetes (8.0 %), hypothyroidism (6.3 %) and malignancy (5.0 %). After 5 years, 41.0 % had developed at least one new co-morbidity, the most common being: hypertension (15.1 %), malignancy (7.6 %), stroke/transient ischemic accident (5.1 %), myocardial infarction (4.3 %) and osteoporosis (3.7 %). Age at disease onset, a raised erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) at inclusion, previous treatment with glucocorticoids (GC; p < 0.001 for all), extra-articular RA (Ex-RA; p < 0.01), DAS28 (area under the curve) at 24 months (p < 0.05), previous smoking at inclusion (p = 0.058) and male gender (p < 0.01) were associated with a new co-morbidity overall at T5. Treatment with biologics (p < 0.05) reduced the risk. In multiple logistic regression modelling, ESR (p = 0.036) at inclusion was associated with a new co-morbidity after 5 years, adjusted for age, sex, smoking and GC treatment. In a similar model, Ex-RA (p < 0.05) was associated with a new co-morbidity at T5. In a third model, adjusted for age and sex, a new pulmonary co-morbidity was associated with a smoking history at inclusion (p < 0.01), but not with ESR. There was substantial co-morbidity among early RA patients already at disease onset, with considerable new co-morbidity being added during the first five years. Measures of disease activity were associated with the occurrence of a new co-morbidity indicating that the inflammation is of importance in this context.
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    • "The major symptoms are synovial inflammation and swollen joints, autoantibody production, deformation of cartilage and bone structures, and systemic features such as cardiovascular, pulmonary, psychological, and skeletal disorders (McInnes and Schett 2011). RA is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD), like atherosclerosis and myocardial infarction, likely due to the chronic systemic inflammation and physical inactivity (Pahor et al. 2006; Solomon et al. 2003; Maradit-Kremers et al. 2005). The overall mortality rate in patients with RA is 1.6 compared to that of the general population, and CVD accounts for 40–50 % of the deaths in this group (Avina-Zubieta et al. 2008). "
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    ABSTRACT: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) are inflammatory diseases which involve increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). High intensity interval training (HIIT) is known to be effective in improving cardiovascular health. The aim of this study was to investigate whether 10 weeks of HIIT at 85-95 % of HRmax would improve important risk factors of CVD in rheumatic patients, and if these patients would tolerate exercise intensities above today's recommendations. Seven women with RA and eleven with adult-JIA, 20-50 years, were recruited to this cross-over study. Participants performed HIIT, consisting of 4 × 4 min intervals at 85-95 % of HRmax twice a week for 10 weeks on spinning bikes. Maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max), heart rate recovery, blood pressure, body composition, and blood variables were measured before and after the exercise and control period. Disease activity was determined and questionnaire data were collected. HIIT resulted in 12.2 % increase in VO2max and 2.9 % improvement in heart rate recovery (p < 0.05). BMI, body fat, and waist circumference decreased 1.2, 1.0, and 1.6 %, respectively, whereas muscle mass increased 0.6 % (p < 0.05). A trend toward decreased CRP was detected after HIIT (p = 0.08). No changes were detected in disease activity or pain. Despite rigorous high intensity exercise, no increase was detected in disease activity or pain, indicating that HIIT was well tolerated by these patients. Furthermore, HIIT had positive effects on several CVD risk factors. In light of this pilot study, HIIT seems like a promising non-pharmacological treatment strategy for patients with RA and adult-JIA.
    No preview · Article · May 2015 · Arbeitsphysiologie
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    • "Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a systemic inflammatory autoimmune disease associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and premature mortality [1] [2]. The primary research focus in vascular disease in patients with RA has been on coronary heart disease. "
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: To investigate the incidence of atrial fibrillation (AF) among patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) compared to the general population. Methods: A population-based inception cohort of Olmsted County, Minnesota, residents with incident RA in 1980-2007 and a cohort of non-RA subjects from the same population base were assembled and followed until 12/31/2008. The occurrence of AF was ascertained by medical record review. Results: The study included 813 patients with RA and 813 non-RA subjects (mean age 55.9 (SD:15.7) years, 68% women in both cohorts). The prevalence of AF was similar in the RA and non-RA cohorts at RA incidence/index date (4% versus 3%; P = 0.51). The cumulative incidence of AF during follow-up was higher among patients with RA compared to non-RA subjects (18.3% versus 16.3% at 20 years; P = 0.048). This difference persisted after adjustment for age, sex, calendar year, smoking, and hypertension (hazard ratio: 1.46; 95% CI: 1.07, 2.00). There was no evidence of a differential impact of AF on mortality in patients with RA compared to non-RA subjects (hazard ratio 2.5 versus 2.8; interaction P = 0.31). Conclusion: The incidence of AF is increased in patients with RA, even after adjustment for AF risk factors. AF related mortality risk did not differ between patients with and without RA.
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