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Semin Arthritis Rheum. 2010 Dec;40(3):215-21. doi: 10.1016/j.semarthrit.2010.04.002. Epub 2010 Jun 11.

Comparison of symptoms, treatment, and outcomes of coronary artery disease among rheumatoid arthritis and matched subjects undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention.

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  • 1Division of Rheumatology, Immunology, and Allergy, Brigham & Women's Hospital, Boston, MA 02115, USA.



Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is associated with an increased prevalence of coronary artery disease (CAD). We investigated the presenting symptoms of CAD, coronary anatomy (single versus multi-vessel CAD), and treatment among a group of subjects undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with angioplasty and/or stenting.


We evaluated a retrospective cohort of 43 RA subjects and 43 matched non-RA subjects undergoing PCI at 2 academic referral centers. RA subjects were matched to non-RA subjects on age, gender, history of coronary artery bypass grafting, date of PCI, and interventional cardiologist. We compared cardiac risk factors, presentation, treatment, and outcomes.


The mean age of the study cohort was 71 ± 10 years, and the distribution of traditional cardiac risk factors was similar in the subjects with RA compared with the matched non-RA subjects (all P values > 0.05). Seventy-four percent of subjects with RA compared with 67% of those without RA presented with an acute coronary syndrome before PCI (P = 0.48). All subjects in this cohort undergoing PCI had at least 1 stenosis in a major epicardial vessel and similar percentages of subjects with RA (44%) and without RA (40%) had multi-vessel CAD (P = 0.66). The administration of cardiac medications both at PCI and at hospital discharge was not different among subjects with RA compared with matched non-RA subjects.


Among this cohort with significant CAD undergoing PCI, clinical characteristics, presentation, severity of CAD, treatment modalities, and outcomes were similar in subjects with RA and well-matched non-RA subjects.

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