Arthritis treatment could benefit diabetes management

Thu, 13 Oct 2011
A new study has found that a kind of drug taken to treat arthritis could also help to protect people against type 2 diabetes. Scientists in the United States have shown that patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, a very debilitating form of arthritis, who take a drug treatment called biologics could have their chances of developing diabetes reduced by 51 per cent.

The study, carried out in Pennsylvania and published in the journal Arthritis Care and Research, involved data from almost 1,600 adults with rheumatoid arthritis but who did not have diabetes. It was found that of the 91 patients went on to develop diabetes, only 16 had used biologic drugs as compared to the 75 patients who had never used this type of drug.

Such biologic drugs, which some experts believe could be one of the most crucial developments in the treatment of arthritis for many years, are used for treating rheumatoid arthritis by combating the harmful joint inflammation that arises from the condition. For instance, in Ireland it is thought that there are over 40,000 people with rheumatoid arthritis, of which 15,000 of these also suffer from diabetes.

The study pointed out that "It is even more encouraging that this latest research indicates additional potential benefits from this innovative treatment ."
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