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EULAR 2024 Rheumatology Roundup (6.21.2024)

Drs. Artie Kavanaugh and Jack Cush discuss highlights from the EULAR 2024 meeting in Vienna

The path to new technologies in rheumatology must be beset with caution

As we have incorporated technology into our workflows, and consequently saved lives and suffering, we have balanced our excitement about progress with proof that incremental advances can truly deliver benefit. it is easy to let promise carry our caution away - and while most of the time such advances come in a vetted package, which we can consume without concern, conference abstracts come raw. This is the necessary ingredient to a platform which allows for bold ideas and innovation, but for that reason it is not such a curated space. At EULAR 2024, we saw the usual mix of bright, raw ideas on the poster floor emblematic of this paradigm.

Personalized Exercise may have Key Benefits in Axial Spondyloarthritis

In a very interesting study at #EULAR2024, researchers demonstrated that personalized, supervised exercise therapy significantly improves physical function and quality of life for individuals with axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA) and severe functional limitations. This finding marks a critical advancement in the treatment of axSpA, particularly for patients with sustained disease activity, severe ankylosis, or significant comorbidities, who have historically been under-represented in research.

RA: update for women of child bearing potential (and men!)

Fertility in the context of RMDs is a daily concern for a lot of rheumatologists and patients. EULAR this year proposed new fertility data, especially in Rheumatoid Arthritis, along with an update of the EULAR points to consider for use of antirheumatic drugs in reproduction, pregnancy and lactation.

Damage in Childhood Lupus

EurekAlert!

Childhood lupus (cSLE) is a rare multisystem disorder with significant associated morbidity, but evidence-based guidelines are sparse, and as such management is often based on clinical expertise.

Update on Sjogren's disease trials

With better endpoint and patient selection strategy over the last 4 years, many new therapies have met their endpoints/shown promising signal in the Phase 2 randomised controlled trials in Sjogren's disease (iscalimab, ianalumab, dazodalibep, and sequential therapy belimumab + rituximab). Since many previous studies have shown the discordance between physician assessment and patient’s symptom burden, there is a glimmer of hope with the efficacy signals demonstrated by both iscalimab and dazodalibep in two patient cohorts; a) cohort 1 = high disease activity with variable symptom burden and b) cohort 2 = high symptom burden but low disease activity. EULAR 2024 offered additional updates.

New Treatments for Systemic Sclerosis

EurekAlert!

Autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (aHSCT) for SSc has been proven the most effective treatment strategy with regard to overall and event free survival in selected patients.2 But a key limitation is its toxicity, and new treatment options are needed.

Camels and psoriatic arthritis - a new treatment link

I am a big fan of animals and wildlife. Whenever I can, I try to wander outdoors to look for our friends big and small in the animal kingdom. If it rains, as often it does in the UK, the latest edition of Planet Earth will do. So, I was naturally attracted to the presentation by Professor Iain McInnes from the University of Glasgow, oral presentation OP0195 at #EULAR2024 where the link between camels and psoriatic arthritis was made.

EULAR 2024 – Day 4 Report

The final day of EULAR 2024 was rich in posters, Late-breaking oral presentations and EULAR updates and recommendations.  Below is a synopsis of the half-day's action.

Update on low-dose glucocorticoids in SLE

Glucocorticoids (GC) have been the mainstay of treatment in SLE for nearly three quarters of a century. GC induce a range of anti-inflammatory effects, quickly relieve some symptoms and lower mortality in some life-threatening flares. However, they also have multiple side effects that limit the duration of treatment, as well as the dose used. Accordingly, the 2023 EULAR recommendations for SLE set a target dose of ≤5mg/day. Is low dose GC an achievable target?

Achieving drug-free remission in axSpA

EurekAlert!

A clinical trial in early axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA) demonstrated sustained inactive disease status in over 60% of patients.

Choices in GCA

There are a number of diseases where new biologic and targeted synthetic therapeutic options are coming online, and the temptation will be to consider them all equally. GCA is one of those diseases.