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No impact of tumor necrosis-factor antagonists on the joint manifestations of sarcoidosis

Authors Banse C, Bisson-Vaivre A, Kozyreff-Meurice M, Vittecoq O, Goëb V

Received 27 February 2013

Accepted for publication 30 May 2013

Published 22 July 2013 Volume 2013:6 Pages 605—611

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJGM.S44542

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3


Christopher Banse,1 Aurélia Bisson-Vaivre,1 Marie Kozyreff-Meurice,1 Olivier Vittecoq,1 Vincent Goëb2

1Rheumatology Department, Rouen University Hospital, Rouen, France; 2Rheumatology Department, Amiens University Hospital, Amiens, France

Objective: The use of anti-tumor necrosis factor (TNF) agents to treat joint manifestations of sarcoidosis has not been described. We evaluated the efficacy and safety of three such biologics in patients with these symptoms refractory to conventional therapy (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, and/or disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs).
Methods: This retrospective study, covering January 2001 to September 2011, examined clinical–biological parameters collected before anti-TNF treatment (age, sex, duration of disease evolution, drugs taken), and at introduction and under anti-TNF therapy (number of painful and swollen joints, visual analog scale score of global disease activity, disease-activity score of 28 joints with erythrocyte sedimentation rate or C-reactive protein, TNF-antagonist duration). At 3, 6, and 12 months, anti-TNF impact on joints and the therapeutic response according to European League Against Rheumatism criteria used for rheumatoid arthritis were assessed.
Results: Ten patients’ data were evaluated; some of them had received several anti-TNF agents (median [range] duration on each biotherapy was 10 [4–30] months), which enabled analysis of 19 prescriptions. The total duration of anti-TNF exposure was 17.6 patient-years, which was started a median of 3 (0.33–17) years after sarcoidosis diagnosis. The median numbers of painful and swollen joints were 1 (0–28) and 0 (0–9), respectively. Despite rapid efficacy, after 1 year of treatment, clinical (especially joint) and biological parameters were comparable to pretreatment, and only the corticosteroid dose was significantly lower (P=0.03). One case of mild skin toxicity was noted.
Conclusion: TNF antagonists allowed significant steroid sparing and were well tolerated, but do not seem to be effective against sarcoidosis joint involvement.

Keywords: sarcoidosis, anti-TNF, arthritis, adalimumab, etanercept, infliximab

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