Our study showed that abatacept treatment in patients with RA is associated with low IRs of malignancies, infections, autoimmune diseases and infusion/injection reactions. Our findings suggest the risks of hospitalized infections, malignancies and psoriasis are similar with abatacept and csDMARDs and that the safety profile for abatacept versus other bDMARDs is favourable in terms of hospitalized infections and infusion/injection reactions. Given that patients with RA are already at a higher risk of malignancy and infections than the general population, our findings are likely to be of clinical interest in making therapeutic decisions. However, additional observational research with longer follow-up periods is needed to fully evaluate the comparative safety of abatacept versus other DMARDs in terms of malignancy and mortality.
AEs: Adverse events; bDMARDs: Biologic DMARDs; CIs: Confidence intervals; csDMARDs: Conventional synthetic DMARDs; DMARDs: Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs; GC: Glucocorticoid; HAQ-DI: Health Assessment Questionnaire-Disability Index; HR: Hazard ratios; IPTWs: Inverse probability of treatment weights; IRs: Incidence rates; IV: Intravenous; MSMs: Marginal structural models; NMSCs: Non-melanoma skin cancers; RA: Rheumatoid arthritis; RCTs: Randomized controlled trials; SIs: Serious infections; TNFis: Tumour necrosis factor-α inhibitors
We thank all of the patients who participated in FORWARD that made this important study possible. Professional medical writing and editorial assistance was provided by Linda Brown at Caudex and was funded by Bristol-Myers Squibb.
Dr. Michaud was supported by grants from the Rheumatology Research Foundation Investigator Award and Pfizer.
This study was sponsored by Bristol-Myers Squibb.
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Arthritis Res Ther. 2019;21(141) © 2019 BioMed Central, Ltd.
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