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29-06-2020 | Rheumatology | News | Article

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COVID-19 lockdown has ‘significant consequences’ for SpA patients

Claire Barnard

medwireNews: Home confinement during the COVID-19 pandemic is associated with a reduction in medication intake and a worsening of disease activity among patients with spondyloarthritis (SpA), survey results suggest.

Among 609 French patients (average age 45 years, 75% women) who responded to a questionnaire in April 2020, 63% reported worsening of their disease during lockdown, and 28% described “considerable deterioration,” with worsening of symptoms significantly linked to treatment modification. A total of 47% of patients reported treatment changes during home confinement, with 39% of the 555 patients taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and 24% of the 482 taking biologic DMARDs reducing or stopping therapy.

Treatment changes in NSAIDs “may be explained by the largely inappropriate public warnings against the use of these drugs and the consequent confusion among both the general population and medical community,” say Christian Roux (Cote d’Azur University, Nice, France) and co-researchers. They also suggest that “[a]nother explanation of the worsening of symptoms could be the reduced physical activity resulting from home confinement.”

Together, these findings highlight that the “COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting confinement had significant consequences in our SpA population,” which “has considerable clinical implications, given that home confinement is likely to recur in the future,” writes the team in a correspondence to Arthritis & Rheumatology.

Roux et al conclude: “Patients need to be educated about the current evidence on NSAIDs drugs and ways to stay physically active at home.”

medwireNews is an independent medical news service provided by Springer Healthcare. © 2020 Springer Healthcare part of the Springer Nature Group

29 June 2020: The coronavirus pandemic is affecting all healthcare professionals across the globe. Medicine Matters’ focus, in this difficult time, is the dissemination of the latest data to support you in your research and clinical practice, based on the scientific literature. We will update the information we provide on the site, as the data are published. However, please refer to your own professional and governmental guidelines for the latest guidance in your own country.

Arthritis Rheumatol 2020; doi:10.1002/art.41397

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