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To evaluate the efficacy and safety of additive triple disease modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) combination therapy of a low dose of sulfhydryl compounds inverted question markD-penicillamine, bucillamine or tiopronin inverted question mark, sulfasalazine (SSZ) and methotrexate (MTX) as a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients, we studied a total of 33 Japanese RA patients (6 males, 27 females). At 1 or 2 months after simultaneous administration of the 3 above-mentioned DMARDs was begun, significant improvements were seen in markers of joint inflammation, i.e., erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein in sera. At 6 months, clinical improvement judged by the physicians' overall assessment of joint symptoms and laboratory data was observed in 29 (88%) of the 33 RA patients. No marked effect was observed in the other 4 (12%) patients, however. We observed no significant adverse reaction to this therapy. This suggests that additive triple DMARD combination therapy of a low dose of sulfhydryl compounds, SSZ and MTX could be a useful drug therapy for the treatment of RA patients, even those who are refractory.
disease modifying anti-rheumatic drug
Acta Medica Okayama
Okayama University Medical School
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