How is alphavirus-caused viral arthritis treated?

Updated: Nov 12, 2019
  • Author: Rabea Ahmed Khouqeer, MD, FRCPC, FAAAAI; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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Answer

Treatment of arthritis associated with alphavirus infection is symptomatic, involving the use of analgesics and NSAIDs, but aspirin should be avoided so as to prevent the development of a hemorrhagic component with alphavirus rashes. When NSAIDs are not effective, chloroquine phosphate 250 mg/day may be considered.

Chronic chikungunya arthritis shares several characteristics with rheumatoid arthritis such as persistent debilitating arthralgia and exacerbated inflammatory response. Because of these parallels, hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and disease‐modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) such as methotrexate (MTX) and sulfasalazine have been evaluated in some peri‐epidemic clinical trials of treatments. However, these studies have produced conflicting outcomes and it remains unclear whether specific DMARDs are effective in treating chronic chikungunya arthritis. [17]


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