Do anti-TNF drugs lessen risk of heart disease? A clinical study
Cardiovascular (CV) disease is a major medical problem and cause of mortality in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Evidence suggests that inflammation associated with RA may play a major role in the development of CV disease. Novel non-invasive imaging techniques, including magnetic resonance imaging [MRI] and 18fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography scan [FDG-PET/CT]), have been developed to characterize the atherosclerotic plaque and associated inflammation in the blood vessel wall.
In this study, Dr. Greenberg will use MRI and FDG-PET/CT to determine whether biologic therapies including abatacept and anti-TNF therapies can improve vessel wall inflammation and plaque characteristics in RA patients. The results of this study will help determine potential risk reduction strategies for CV disease in patients with RA.