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J Rheumatol. 2011 Dec;38(12):2536-9. doi: 10.3899/jrheum.110410. Epub 2011 Nov 1.

Effects of smoking on disease activity and radiographic progression in early rheumatoid arthritis.

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  • 1Arthritis Unit, Rheumatology Service, IDIBAPS, Hospital Clinic, Barcelona, Spain.



To analyze the effects of cigarette smoking on disease activity and radiographic damage in patients with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA).


Study subjects were 156 patients with early RA (< 2 yrs). Disease activity, therapeutic response, and radiographic progression were compared in smokers and nonsmokers at 24 months.


At baseline, ever-smokers had earlier disease onset and a closer association with the shared epitope (SE), but not more seropositive disease. No significant differences were observed in disease activity and European League Against Rheumatism therapeutic responses between smokers and nonsmokers. Multivariate analysis showed that baseline Larsen score, the HLA-DRB*04 genotype, being female, and current smoking were associated with radiographic progression.


In patients with early RA, smoking was associated with earlier disease onset and the SE. Smoking was an independent factor of radiographic progression.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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