Closing the Mortality Gap: RA and Heart Disease

This week on HealthCentral, I'm looking at good news about Biologics and the systemic impact of RA:

"It’s called the mortality gap. And none of us like to think about it.

The average life expectancy of people with RA is 10 years less than the general population. RA is a systemic disease that affects not just our joints, but also our internal organs. The mortality gap exists because the systemic inflammation of RA leads to a higher incidence of heart attack and stroke.

But there's good news. A few weeks ago at the 2012 meeting of the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) in Berlin, researchers presented a paper showing a dramatic reduction in heart attacks in people taking anti-TNF medication, such as Enbrel, Humira and Remicade."

The rest of the post is here.


Great article. So rarely gets talked about but really important to remember its not just our joints that get inflamed.
AlisonH said…
Interesting... They took me off the then-experimental Remicade after that first big flare was over because they were afraid it would damage my heart, given the early data. Huh. (And then they restarted it eight months later to stop another flare, and with the time gap, I reacted to it with congestive heart failure, ending when I went off it again.)
Anonymous said…
Lene, Thanks for raising an issue for which many of us would rather stick our heads in the sand. My close neighbor years ago died of heart problems at age 63 and he had raging RA for many years. This all before biologicals were around. The European report is good news indeed.
sree wify said…

Lack of exercise and an improper diet and can contribute to heart disease and result in obesity. According to the American Heart Association, obesity is a major risk for heart disease due to its ability to raise blood pressure (resulting in arteriosclerosis) as well as contributing to diabetes. Diabetes is a common cause of heart disease. In fact, according to the American Diabetes Association, two out of three people with diabetes die from either heart disease or stroke. Thanks.