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COVID 19 Updates from RheumNow

Industry Payments to Rheumatologists Dropped During COVID

MedPage Today

Having their clinics shut down and patients staying away during the COVID-19 pandemic was bad enough for physicians' finances, but now a new study finds that, at least for rheumatologists, payments from industry dried up as well.

Faith and Miracle Larry

This week on the podcast, Dr. Jack Cush recalls what life was like early on during COVID, from March to June of 2020.  During this time, his close friend, Larry, contracted COVID-19 and was hospitalized, intubated and put on mechanical ventilation for nearly 2 months.

2022 Rheumatology Year in Review (1-6-2023)

Dr. Jack Cush reviews the best of 2022 in Rheumatology - highlights on new drug indications, breakthrough lupus therapies, new biosimilars and the multivitamin letdown.

Best of 2022: Freeze Tag

Editor's note: this blog originally published on January 22, 2022, and is being shared again as a Best of 2022. Enjoy!

COVID-19 Vaccine Responses in Rheumatic Disease Patients

Nature Reviews Rheumatology features a review of three notable papers that address the impact of SARS-CoV-2 vaccination on people with inflammatory rheumatic disease. 

Vaccine Efficacy in Patients with Seronegative Spondyloarthritis

Vaccine efficacy remains an important and highly discussed topic at this year’s annual meeting given the ongoing COVID-19 global health crisis, current influenza season, and recently published 2022 ACR guidelines for vaccinations in patients with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases.

Does Evusheld shield people living with rheumatic diseases?

Fast forward nearly 3 years since the first case of COVID-19 was reported, and I am amazed of the speed of response on how to keep our patients with rheumatic and musculoskeletal disease (RMD) safe from this infection.

Long COVID and Rheumatic Disease

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact worldwide particularly among those who are immunocompromised. Numerous studies have highlighted the increased risk of acute SARS-CoV-2 infection among patients with rheumatic diseases (RD).

Creaky Joints Presentations at ACR Convergence 2022

The patient advocacy organization CreakyJoints will present 13 scientific posters at this year's ACR Convergence 2022 and 8 posters as part of the patient perspectives track. Below is a sampling of these scientific posters. 

Women with Rheumatic Disease (11.4.2022)

Dr. Jack Cush reviews the news and journal articles from this past week on  New regulatory decisions about JAK inhibitors and why do women with rheumatic diseases have unfair outcomes?

Undiagnosed RA During the Pandemic


The number of new diagnoses of rheumatoid arthritis fell by 20% in the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, new research suggests.

Infections & Lupus (10.28.2022)

Dr. Jack Cush discusses the news and journal reports from the past week on RheumNow. This week more lupus nephritis, more drug induced lupus and more lupus infections that may kill. 


Michaud et al. RA patients with long COVID had more fibromyalgia pre-COVID (41% vs 13%), higher rates of pain, depression, and worse PROs pre-COVID. Authors suggest long COVID may partially reflect pre-existing illness Abstr#1629 #ACR23 #ACRbest @RheumNow
Richard Conway ( View Tweet )
3 weeks 3 days ago
COVID boosters in RA patients: getting the job done (versus healthy controls, irrespective of non-withheld DMARDs excluding ritux) @UChicagoMed #ACR23 ABST0416 @RheumNow
David Liew @drdavidliew ( View Tweet )
3 weeks 4 days ago
Ph 3 360 pt RCT of sarilumab in #GCA was terminated early (COVID). 83 pts Rx'd, only 35%(29) completed. Sustained remission @wk 52: - SAR 200: 6/13 - SAR 150: 3/7 - PBO: 0/6 All had 26wk GC taper Sm sample size & COVID ruined RCT interpretation #PMR
Dr. John Cush @RheumNow ( View Tweet )
1 month 1 week ago
Comparison of 354 527 COVID-19 infected vs 6.1 mill controls shows COVID incr risk of alopecia areata (aHR 1.12), alopecia totalis (aHR 1.74), ANCA vasculitis (aHR 2.76), Crohns (aHR), & sarcoidosis (aHR).
Dr. John Cush @RheumNow ( View Tweet )
1 month 4 weeks ago
While COVID rates are near historic lows & far less dangerous, hospitalizations are up 10.3%, ER visits up 7%, pos. tests rose to 6.3% from 5.8% in the last week

Dr. John Cush @RheumNow ( View Tweet )

4 months 1 week ago
RA Biologics Lower COVID-19 Deaths, but Not Recovery Time Do abatacept, cenicriviroc, or infliximab improve time to recovery for patients hospitalized with COVID-19 pneumonia compared with standard care?
Dr. John Cush @RheumNow ( View Tweet )
4 months 3 weeks ago
An RCT of 1136 newly COVID test positive pts compared long term outcomes if immediately given METFORMIN or Placebo. Cumulative incidence of long COVID at day 300 was 6.3% w/ metformin vs 10.4% w/ placebo (HR 0.59; HR 037 if given w/in 3d)
Dr. John Cush @RheumNow ( View Tweet )
5 months 2 weeks ago
Factors associated with higher prevalence of post COVID-19 condition include female sex, age, asthma, diabetes, hypertension, number of symptoms in the acute phase and possible mechanisms causing the syndrome, Mayssam Nehme, COVID-19, #EULAR2023
Dr. Antoni Chan @synovialjoints ( View Tweet )
6 months ago
Reflections on COVID-19 and autoimmunity: post-vaccination autoimmunity is not specific to COVID-19, autoimmunity is not autoimmune disease, the large numbers may result in the perception of increased occurrence of autoimmunity, Schulze-Koops H, COVID-19, #EULAR2023 @RheumNow
Dr. Antoni Chan @synovialjoints ( View Tweet )
6 months ago
Factors related to having a flare of arthritis during COVID-19 include female gender, higher disease activity, no DMARD at time of vaccination. Stopping DMARDs need to be weighed up against risk of flares, Pedro Machado, COVID-19 #EULAR2023 @RheumNow
Dr. Antoni Chan @synovialjoints ( View Tweet )
6 months ago