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Chloroquine as a steroid sparing agent for asthma

Asthma can be treated with drugs which aim to reduce inflammation in the airways. Inhaled corticosteroids are frequently used, but occasionally individuals require oral steroids for adequate control. However, oral steroids are frequently associated with severe side‐effects. Chloroquine has been suggested as a useful 'add‐on' therapy to oral steroid treatment with the aim of reducing the dose requirement in such asthma. This review found one small cross‐over study but this did not provide adequate evidence to decide whether chloroquine should be offered to reduce or eliminate oral steroid treatment. There is a need for well‐designed trials addressing this question before recommendations can be made.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2011

Drugs for discoid lupus erythematosus

Discoid lupus erythematosus (DLE) is a form of skin inflammation which occurs particularly on sun‐exposed skin and can cause scarring. All forms of cutaneous lupus erythematosus are most common in women of childbearing age, which is important because some treatments, including thalidomide and acitretin, can cause birth defects, and hydroxychloroquine may cause damage to the eye or ear. As the chronic nature and scarring of DLE can have psychological impact, and some treatments may produce serious adverse effects, we felt it was important to combat uncertainty and identify the best and safest treatment. The evidence is current to September 2016.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2017

Medicines for Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Review of the Research for Adults

This summary will tell you about two types of medicine to treat RA: DMARDs and corticosteroids. It will explain what research has found about how well DMARDs work when taken alone or with corticosteroids to treat RA. It will also tell you what research says about the side effects of these medicines. You can use this summary to talk with your doctor about whether one of these medicines may be right for you.

Comparative Effectiveness Review Summary Guides for Consumers [Internet] - Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US).

Version: November 20, 2012

Antimalarials for treating rheumatoid arthritis

Antimalarials have been used for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) for several decades. This review found four trials, with 300 patients receiving hydrochloroquine and 292 receiving placebo. A benefit was observed in the patients taking hydroxychloroquine compared to placebo. There was no difference between the two groups in terms of those who had to withdraw from trials due to side effects.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2010

Methotrexate alone or in combination with other medications for rheumatoid arthritis

‐The combination of methotrexate + sulfasalazine + hydroxychloroquine and methotrexate + most biologic DMARDs improves disease activity. Other treatment combinations (methotrexate + hydroxychloroquine, methotrexate + leflunomide, methotrexate + gold injections) may improve disease activity in people who do not respond to methotrexate alone.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2016

Combining two or more drugs vs one drug for pain control in inflammatory arthritis

This summary of a Cochrane review presents what we know from research about the effect of a combination of two pain relieving drugs for pain control in inflammatory arthritis (IA).

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2011

The use of drugs to slow or stop progression of arthritis related to cystic fibrosis

Arthritis is not a common complication of cystic fibrosis, but it can cause major problems when it does occur. There are two distinct types of arthritis in cystic fibrosis: cystic fibrosis‐related arthropathy and hypertrophic pulmonary osteoarthropathy. The best treatment for these types of arthritis is not clear because of cystic fibrosis and its intense treatment. Some drugs can treat the symptoms of arthritis by reducing inflammation of the joints and relieving pain, but only disease modifying anti‐rheumatic drugs can stop or slow progression of the disease. We planned to report evidence from clinical trials which compared different disease‐modifying drugs compared with placebo (or dummy treatment), with each other or with no treatment. However, we were disappointed that we could not find any completed randomised controlled trials of these treatments or any evidence from non‐randomised controlled trials. We suggest that there should be a randomised controlled trial to look at the effects and the safety of using disease modifying anti‐rheumatic drugs to slow or stop the progression of arthritis in people with cystic fibrosis.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2017

Pain in patients with inflammatory arthritis and gastrointestinal or liver problems

This summary of a Cochrane review presents what we know from research about the effect of pain relieving drugs for people with inflammatory arthritis plus stomach or gut disease, or liver disease.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2012

Rheumatoid arthritis: What can be expected from biologic drugs?

Biologic drugs can delay or prevent the progression of rheumatoid arthritis and relieve symptoms like swollen joints, pain and fatigue. One side effect is an increased risk of infection.

Informed Health Online [Internet] - Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG).

Version: July 27, 2016

Systematic Reviews in PubMed

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