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Drug Saf. 2007;30(1):27-46.

Drug-induced musculoskeletal disorders.

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  • 1Division of Therapeutics, Victor Segalen University & Department of Rheumatology, University Hospital of Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France.


Drug-induced musculoskeletal disorders represent a broad clinical spectrum, from asymptomatic biological abnormalities to severe and even life-threatening diseases. Since an increasing number of drugs have been implicated in inducing rheumatic symptoms and/or syndromes, this review is not meant to be exhaustive, bearing in mind that the development of any musculoskeletal disorder should be considered as possibly related to a medication. The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the more frequent drug-induced musculoskeletal disorders. These include: (i) arthralgias and arthropathies, including chondropathies and inflammatory arthritis; (ii) connective tissue diseases, especially lupus-like syndromes; (iii) periarticular disorders, including tendinopathies, enthesopathies and frozen shoulder; (iii) bone diseases, such as osteoporosis, osteomalacia and osteonecrosis; and (iv) myopathies. Although virtually all drug classes may induce musculoskeletal disorders, a significant part of them are related to corticosteroids, vaccines, antibacterials and lipid-lowering agents. Knowledge of drug-induced musculoskeletal disorders avoids carrying out unnecessary investigations, and allows optimal management of the patients, i.e. early discontinuation of the offending agent, adequate treatment monitoring and/or intervention with appropriate preventive actions.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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