Log in with your email address username.


Important notice

doctorportal Learning is on the move as we will be launching a new website very shortly. If you would like to sign up to dp Learning now to register for CPD learning or to use our CPD tracker, please email support@doctorportal.com.au so we can assist you. If you are already signed up to doctorportal Learning, your login will work in the new site so you can continue to enrol for learning, complete an online module, or access your CPD tracker report.

To access and/or sign up for other resources such as Jobs Board, Bookshop or InSight+, please go to www.mja.com.au, or click the relevant menu item and you will be redirected.

All other doctorportal services, such as Find A Doctor, are no longer available.

Advances in rheumatoid arthritis

- Featured Image

This narrative review summarises the literature on contemporary understanding of adult rheumatoid arthritis (RA) focusing on current therapy, especially biological therapy. Articles were progressively identified by hand searching the list of contents in leading general and rheumatology journals, on a monthly basis over the past 6 years.

RA is a relatively common inflammatory arthritis (Box 1) and is self-reported by 2% of the Australian population (http://www.aihw.gov.au/rheumatoid-arthritis). It is diagnosed based on four criteria: number and pattern of joints involved, disease duration greater than 6 weeks, raised inflammatory markers (such as erythrocyte sedimentation rate [ESR] or C-reactive protein [CRP] level) and positive serology (the well established rheumatoid factor or the newer cyclic citrullinated peptide antibody [CCP])1 — CCP appears to be pathogenic and can be produced in gingival and lung tissues.2 RA cannot be diagnosed with only one involved joint. While there is considerable variation, either antibody is positive in about 50% of patients at presentation, with some overlap making about 25% seronegative. These antibodies are commonly misused in clinical practice, and their use should be restricted to patients with symptoms of inflammatory arthritis, especially…