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Semin Arthritis Rheum. 2011 Jun;40(6):559-75. doi: 10.1016/j.semarthrit.2010.07.010. Epub 2010 Oct 27.

Drug monitoring in systemic lupus erythematosus: a systematic review.

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Department of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, Stanford University, CA, USA.



To conduct an evidence-based review of the common medication toxicities and strategies and utility of drug toxicity monitoring among patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).


PubMed and other databases were searched for articles published between the years 1960 and 2010 for keywords referring to medication toxicity or monitoring strategies for 7 drugs commonly used in SLE. All relevant English-language articles were reviewed. Most of the evidence we reviewed comprised studies that addressed the incidence of toxicity-randomized trials that compare different monitoring strategies for these drugs do not exist.


Data to describe the frequency of adverse events and appropriate strategies for screening for these events are scarce. Toxicities do not appear to be substantially more common among patients with SLE compared to other conditions for which these drugs are used.


Our review demonstrates that the scientific basis for many aspects of drug toxicity monitoring is weak and that most current recommendations are based largely on expert consensus. We present a future research agenda to address these gaps.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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