Recombinant human erythropoietin therapy in patients with rheumatoid arthritis with the anemia of chronic disease

C. Salvarani, D. Lasagni, B. Casali, P. Macchioni, L. Boiardi, F. Rossi, P. Rivasi, I. Portioli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We treated 5 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) with anemia of chronic disease with recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) for 11 weeks. An increase in hematocrit (Hct) > 5 was seen in 4 patients after 4 weeks of therapy. The 5th patient had a significant rise in Hct when the dosage of rHuEPO was increased to 150 units/kg from the 4th to 7th week. The subcutaneous administration of rHuEPO dose, reduced by one third with respect to initial dose, maintained an effective Hct value in all the 5 patients during the last 4 weeks of therapy. There was no change in disease activity. In one patient Hct normalization completely resolved symptoms of angina pectoris and permitted hip replacement surgery in another. No side effects occurred during rHuEPO therapy. We conclude that HuEPO is an effective, safe and well tolerated therapy for RA patients with severe anemia of chronic disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1168-1171
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Rheumatology
Volume18
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1991

Keywords

  • Chronic disease anemia
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • rHuEPO
  • Subcutaneous rHuEPO

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Rheumatology

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