Risk factors of severe infections in patients with rheumatoid arthritis treated with leflunomide
Modern Rheumatology, 07/17/2012
Yoo HG et al. – The results showed that some patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) who were taking leflunomide developed severe infections requiring hospitalization, and that older age, DM, and a higher daily dosage of corticosteroid were risk factors associated with leflunomide–associated severe infections.Methods
- The authors performed a retrospective study of RA patients who were prescribed leflunomide between 2004 and 2011.
- Background clinical and laboratory features were compared between patients who suffered severe leflunomide–associated infections and those who did not.
- Since January 2005, 401 RA patients have started on leflunomide.
- Among those, 33 (8.2 %) developed severe infections: pneumonia, oral candidiasis, pyelonephritis, pulmonary tuberculosis, cellulitis, disseminated herpes zoster, tonsillitis, and pulmonary cryptococcosis.
- Logistic regression showed that age at entry, the presence of DM, and daily dosage of corticosteroid were associated with development of severe infections.