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16-11-2018 | Rheumatoid arthritis | News

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Subcutaneous, intravenous tocilizumab similarly effective in RA

medwireNews: The subcutaneous and intravenous formulations of tocilizumab have comparable effectiveness, real-world study results suggest.

Kim Lauper (Geneva University Hospitals, Switzerland) and colleagues demonstrated that median CDAI scores improved to a similar degree over 2 years among 2414 rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients included in the TOCERRA collaboration of eight European registries who were taking intravenous tocilizumab and the 1034 patients who were taking the subcutaneous form.

Moreover, patients from the two groups had a similar likelihood of discontinuing treatment in an analysis stratified by year of treatment initiation and country, and adjusted for factors including age, smoking, and disease duration. Among patients who were still undergoing treatment at the 1-year follow-up, a comparable 13.9% of 1525 patients in the intravenous group and 15.3% of the 524 taking the subcutaneous form were in remission, defined as a CDAI score of 2.8 points or lower.

The researchers also report that switching between the two modes of administration “did not seem to alter effectiveness” of tocilizumab.

And they conclude in RMD Open: “When possible, considering the costs of the intravenous route, subcutaneous tocilizumab should be the preferred mode of administration.”

By Claire Barnard

medwireNews is an independent medical news service provided by Springer Healthcare. © 2018 Springer Healthcare part of the Springer Nature group

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