Wednesday, 28 Jun 2017


Wine and the Rheumatologist: Post ACR Reflections--Wine and Rheumatology at its Best

Let me share a great wine and ACR 2105 story with all of you. It epitomizes everything I think of when I wish to blend my work and my life, and I owe this experience to Mike Schweitz, a noted rheumatologist from Palm Beach.

5 Things To Know About Antimalarials for Lupus

Here are five things every rheumatologist should know about antimalarial medications for lupus. 

The Born Again Rheumatoid

While there are currently 9 biologic agents approved and marketed for the treatment of RA, and although each has a valued place in our arsenal, I would propose none has been as influential or dramatic as TNF inhibitors. The “born again” rheumatoid feeling is not well captured by any of the usual metrics or measures. It’s not found in the HAQ, DAS28, SF36 (either mental or physical), fatigue score, or any lab parameter. I believe it’s best described by my patient RH who wrote me a letter soon after starting etanercept.

Tried-and-True or Something New?

While decades of drug development have improved treatment options, some of our older drugs are harder to improve upon. The same can be said for old movies and new movies, or classic literature and current best sellers. Which do you prefer or rely on?

Building a Better Rheumatologist

Are you efficient, productive and accurate in what you do?  Could you be better? Or do the job differently?

Should Lupus Patients Receive Influenza and Pneumococcal Vaccines?

I have a 21 yr. old lupus nephritis patient on mycophenolate, hydroxychloroquine and prednisone 40 mg per day. She says both her current nephrologist and her prior pediatric rheumatologist told her NOT to get pneumococcal and flu vaccines. I thought she is supposed to get them - any comment?

ACR Annual Meeting and Wine: San Francisco via Sicily

I think this will be my 35th ACR meeting. Meetings such as ACR are family events as much as they are scientific events, meant to be celebrated with food and your favorite legal beverage, which in my case is wine.

The Best Kind of Arthritis …..Revisited

A reprise of a prior blog on the "best kinds of arthritis" to have.  This time with more commentary and good news.

The Dying Hospital Consult

Hospital consults – “nobody goes there anymore”, and not because it’s too crowded (a quote from the late great Yogi Berra), but rather because it’s a poor investment of time and resources.

Jiffy Joint and Rheumatology Retail Clinics

The American College of Physicians issued a position statement about medical clinics popping up inside of retail establishments and pharmacies. For years now I’ve schemed of starting a national chain of “Jiffy Joints”. Is it time?

Drug Safety Risk Communication: The 800 lb Gorilla Approach

Discussions on drug safety can be as treacherous as quicksand for the patient and physician. What the physician knows and what the patient perceives may not be in sync.

Hydrocodone: Then and Now

Today marks the one year anniversary of hydrocodone becoming a schedule II drug with more restrictive access. Has life been better under these new rules?