Dudley, United Kingdom
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Hirsch G.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | Hirsch G.,Clinical Research Unit | O'Neill T.,University of Manchester | Kitas G.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | And 2 more authors.
Clinical Rheumatology | Year: 2012

Information about the distribution of effusion within the arthritic knee joint should be considered in selecting an anatomical approach for arthrocentesis. We recorded ultrasound measurements of fluid distribution in the knees of patients attending our clinic for knee injections under ultrasound guidance. In a cross-sectional observational study, we used high-resolution ultrasound (US) to record measurements of maximum fluid depth in the medial, midline and lateral regions of the suprapatellar pouch (SPP) in 46 patients with arthritis attending for routine US-guided injection of the knee. Mean fluid depth [in millimetres, (SD)] was significantly greater in the lateral SPP [9.2 (5.1)] than in the medial [6.5 (4.6)] or the midline [5.9 (3.7)] regions with the knee in relaxed full extension (p< 0.001 for comparison of lateral SPP with both midline and medial SPP). Small effusions were more commonly detected in the lateral SPP than elsewhere. In patients with painful knee arthritis, fluid distributes maximally to the lateral SPP in the extended knee. This has implications regarding the anatomical approach to arthrocentesis that clinicians should choose to perform and teach. © Clinical Rheumatology 2012.


Arts E.E.A.,Radboud University Nijmegen | Popa C.D.,Radboud University Nijmegen | Donders R.,Radboud University Nijmegen | Sandoo A.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | And 7 more authors.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases | Year: 2015

Objectives Predictive performance of cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk calculators appears suboptimal in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). A disease-specific CVD risk algorithm may improve CVD risk prediction in RA. The objectives of this study are to adapt the Systematic COronary Risk Evaluation (SCORE) algorithm with determinants of CVD risk in RA and to assess the accuracy of CVD risk prediction calculated with the adapted SCORE algorithm. Methods Data from the Nijmegen early RA inception cohort were used. The primary outcome was first CVD events. The SCORE algorithm was recalibrated by reweighing included traditional CVD risk factors and adapted by adding other potential predictors of CVD. Predictive performance of the recalibrated and adapted SCORE algorithms was assessed and the adapted SCORE was externally validated. Results Of the 1016 included patients with RA, 103 patients experienced a CVD event. Discriminatory ability was comparable across the original, recalibrated and adapted SCORE algorithms. The Hosmer-Lemeshow test results indicated that all three algorithms provided poor model fit (p<0.05) for the Nijmegen and external validation cohort. The adapted SCORE algorithm mainly improves CVD risk estimation in non-event cases and does not show a clear advantage in reclassifying patients with RA who develop CVD (event cases) into more appropriate risk groups. Conclusions This study demonstrates for the first time that adaptations of the SCORE algorithm do not provide sufficient improvement in risk prediction of future CVD in RA to serve as an appropriate alternative to the original SCORE. Risk assessment using the original SCORE algorithm may underestimate CVD risk in patients with RA. © 2015 BMJ Publishing Group Ltd & European League Against Rheumatism.


Rollefstad S.,Diakonhjemmet Hospital | Ikdahl E.,Diakonhjemmet Hospital | Hisdal J.,University of Oslo | Olsen I.C.,Diakonhjemmet Hospital | And 7 more authors.
Arthritis and Rheumatology | Year: 2015

Objective Patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and carotid artery plaques have an increased risk of acute coronary syndromes. Statin treatment with the goal of achieving a low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol level of ≤1.8 mmoles/liter (≤70 mg/dl) is recommended for individuals in the general population who have carotid plaques. The aim of the ROsuvastatin in Rheumatoid Arthritis, Ankylosing Spondylitis and other inflammatory joint diseases (RORA-AS) study was to evaluate the effect of 18 months of intensive lipid-lowering treatment with rosuvastatin with regard to change in carotid plaque height. Methods Eighty-six patients (60.5% of whom were female) with carotid plaques and inflammatory joint disease (55 with RA, 21 with AS, and 10 with psoriatic arthritis) were treated with rosuvastatin to obtain the LDL cholesterol goal. Carotid plaque height was evaluated by B-mode ultrasonography. Results The mean±SD age of the patients was 60.8±8.5 years, and the median compliance with rosuvastatin treatment was 97.9% (interquartile range [IQR] 96.0-99.4). At baseline, the median number and height of the carotid plaques were 1.0 (range 1-8) and 1.80 mm (IQR 1.60-2.10), respectively. The mean±SD change in carotid plaque height after 18 months of treatment with rosuvastatin was -0.19±0.35 mm (P < 0.0001). The mean±SD baseline LDL cholesterol level was 4.0±0.9 mmoles/liter (154.7±34.8 mg/dl), and the mean reduction in the LDL cholesterol level was -2.3 mmoles/liter (95% confidence interval [95% CI] -2.48, -2.15) (-88.9 mg/dl [95% CI -95.9, -83.1]). The mean ± SD LDL cholesterol level during the 18 months of rosuvastatin treatment was 1.7±0.4 mmoles/liter (area under the curve). After adjustment for age/sex/blood pressure, no linear relationship between a reduction in carotid plaque height and the level of LDL cholesterol exposure during the study period was observed. Attainment of the LDL cholesterol goal of ≤1.8 mmoles/liter (≤70 mg/dl) or the amount of change in the LDL cholesterol level during the study period did not influence the degree of carotid plaque height reduction. Conclusion Intensive lipid-lowering treatment with rosuvastatin induced atherosclerotic regression and reduced the LDL cholesterol level significantly in patients with inflammatory joint disease. © 2015, American College of Rheumatology.


Semb A.G.,Diakonhjemmet Hospital | Rollefstad S.,Diakonhjemmet Hospital | Van Riel P.,Radboud University Nijmegen | Kitas G.D.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | And 3 more authors.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases | Year: 2014

As physicians we like to have evidence for making decisions about interventions to improve health. The evidence vacuum in the field of cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention and clinical outcome in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has received vigorous attention in the recent literature. There is broad agreement that a patient with RA fulfilling the criteria established for the general population on CVD risk reduction should receive proven interventions, including smoking cessation, weight reduction, blood pressure control and lipidlowering therapy. In accordance with these recommendations, and despite all the uncertainties about CVD treatment threshold, targets and outcome results in RA, we firmly advocate that CVD risk should be assessed and acted on in patients with RA as recommended for the general population, even while educational CVD-preventive programmes are being developed and hard CVD end point studies are undertaken in this patient population. The initial strategies for implementing CVD risk evaluation will necessarily be modest at first. There are several possible strategies for collection of data that can be incorporated into the daily routine during rheumatology consultations at outpatient clinics. We recommend starting with these simple procedures: 1. CVD risk factor recording and evaluation using risk calculators available for the general population 2. Referral of patients with high CVD risk to a primary care physician or a cardiologist skilled in this subject for follow-up 3. Providing information about excess CVD risk and how to modify it to the patients as major stakeholders.


PubMed | Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust, University of Manchester, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and University of Birmingham
Type: | Journal: Seminars in arthritis and rheumatism | Year: 2017

Biologic drugs are novel therapeutic agents with demonstrated effectiveness in the management of a variety of chronic inflammatory disorders. Unmet needs in the treatment of chronic pain have led physicians to utilize a similar approach to patients suffering from conditions not characterized by systemic inflammation such as osteoarthritis (OA). The aim of this review is to discuss the current knowledge on the use of commonly used biologic agents [i.e., anti-tumor necrosis factor alpha (anti-TNF alpha) and anti-nerve growth factor (anti-NGF)] for the management of OA.A narrative literature review of studies investigating the use of biologic agents for the management of osteoarthritis was conducted. We searched MEDLINE and EMBASE for English language publications. A hand-search of reference lists of relevant studies was also performed.Current evidence does not support TNF-alpha inhibition for the management of OA, although a selected subgroup of these patients with a marked inflammatory profile may benefit from this therapy. Anti-NGF therapy has been shown to reduce pain and improve function compared to placebo and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in OA but concerns remain regarding the safety of such treatment. The discrepant results observed in RCTs of biologic agents may be related to heterogeneity, small sample sizes, and differences in the mode of administration of these drugs.Anti-NGF therapy is efficacious for pain in patients with hip and knee OA. Despite the fact that current data suggests that anti-cytokine treatments have limited efficacy in patients with chronic osteoarthritic pain, larger and better designed studies in more selected populations are justified to determine whether such therapeutic approaches can improve outcomes in this disabling condition where our medical treatment armamentarium is relatively poor.


Sandoo A.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | Sandoo A.,University of Birmingham | Kitas G.D.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | Kitas G.D.,University of Birmingham | And 4 more authors.
Arthritis Research and Therapy | Year: 2012

Introduction: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD), and it has been postulated that RA disease-related inflammation contributes to endothelial dysfunction. The aim of the present work was to examine predictors (RA-related and CVD risk factors) and anti-tumor necrosis factor-alpha (anti-TNF-α) treatment effects on endothelial function in different vascular beds.Methods: Microvascular endothelial function (laser Doppler imaging with iontophoresis of acetylcholine and sodium-nitroprusside), and macrovascular endothelial function (flow-mediated dilatation and glyceryl-trinitrate-mediated dilatation) were analyzed in parallel with disease activity. Individual CVD risk factors and global CVD risk were assessed cross-sectionally in 99 unselected RA patients and longitudinally (baseline, 2 weeks, and 3 months) in 23 RA patients commencing anti-TNF-α therapy.Results: In this cross-sectional study, regression analyses revealed that markers of RA disease-related inflammation were not associated with microvascular or macrovascular endothelium-dependent function (P > 0.05); global CVD risk inversely correlated with microvascular endothelium-dependent function (P < 0.01) and with macrovascular endothelium-independent function (P < 0.01). In the longitudinal study, only microvascular endothelium-dependent function showed an improvement after 2 weeks of anti-TNF-α treatment when compared with baseline (437% ± 247% versus 319% ± 217%; P = 0.001), but no association was evident between change in endothelial function and change in inflammatory markers.Conclusions: Classical CVD risk may influence endothelial function more than disease-related markers of inflammation in RA. Classical CVD risk factors and anti-TNF-α medication have different effects on microvascular and macrovascular endothelial function, suggesting that combined CVD-prevention approaches may be necessary. Prospective studies examining whether assessments of vascular function are predictive of long-term CV outcomes in RA are required. © 2012 Sandoo et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Ayre S.,George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust | Barbrook J.,Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust | Engel C.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | Lacey P.,Outreach | And 3 more authors.
Health Information and Libraries Journal | Year: 2015

Background: The lack of robust research measuring the impact of NHS based information skills training prompted the West Midlands Regional Trainers' Forum to conduct a post-training survey. Methods: This is a multi-centred study which collected data from over 60 separate organisations. Survey questionnaires were completed by learners a few weeks after the training event. Results: Five hundred and thirty-four responses were received. 82% of information skills training recipients indicated that they had implemented learning or changed practice as a result of the training. 70% of recipients indicated there had been an impact on patient care. Discussion: The beneficial results from information skills training manifest in a multitude of ways. The results of this study indicate that the learning from information skills training is being used to reduce problems and address the key issues in modern health care. Conclusion: The results clearly demonstrate the value of information skills training and its beneficial impact on patient care, lifelong learning and other key NHS functions. This study shows information skills training as an important activity which supports the information literacy agenda, and has a positive impact across the four key functions of library and knowledge services within the NHS. © 2014 Health Libraries Journal.


Naumann D.,Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust Lyndon | Rusius V.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | Margiotta C.,University of Birmingham | Nevill A.,University of Wolverhampton | And 3 more authors.
Anticancer Research | Year: 2013

Background: Trastuzumab may improve disease-free survival after chemotherapy for HER2-positive breast cancer. However, it carries a risk of cardiotoxicity and counseling patients about such risks is part of informed consent. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has published guidelines for cardiac assessment before and during treatment with trastuzumab in order to minimize the risk of cardiotoxicity. The aim of the present study was to identify risk factors for cardiotoxicity attributed to trastuzumab in a cohort population treated for primary and metastatic breast cancer. Patients and Methods: This study included all women who started a course of trastuzumab from February 2006 - February 2011 at three NHS Trusts in the UK. Their cardiac function during treatment was recorded and cardiotoxicity was defined as a decrease in left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) ≥10% and a reduction to <50%, or a clinical reduction in cardiac function as defined by the New York Heart Association. An independent samples t-test was used to assess whether patient age predicted cardiotoxicity. Pearson's chi-squared tests of independence were used to investigate the association between cardiotoxicity, the indication for trastuzumab, exposure to anthracycline chemotherapy, and Adult Comorbidity Evaluation-27 index (ACE-27) scores. Results: There were 388 female patients included in this study, with a mean age of 54 (range= 25-100 years). Cardiotoxicity was recorded during 61 (15.72%) courses of trastuzumab treatment. There were no associations between cardiotoxicity and the three factors (indication, exposure to anthracyclines, or ACE-27 score), and no significant difference in age between patients with and those without cardiotoxicity. However, subgroup analysis of patients who experienced cardiotoxicity (n= 61) showed that there was a negative correlation (-0.455; p=0.001) between time-to-first cardiotoxicity event and age in the group who had received concurrent anthracycline therapy (n=49). Conclusion: In a real-world 5-year population of patients who received trastuzumab, the incidence of drug-related cardiotoxicity was higher than expected, and the age of the patients appeared to predict the first cardiotoxic event amongst those who experienced cardiotoxicity and had received prior anthracyclines. However, incidence of cardiotoxicity in the whole cohort did not appear to be predicted by age, comorbidity, indication, or exposure to anthracylines. Vigilance, therefore, seems justified when conducting cardiac surveillance for all patients during treatment with trastuzumab, but especially for those who are elderly and receiving concurrent anthracycline therapy.


Cutolo M.,University of Genoa | Kitas G.D.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | Kitas G.D.,University of Manchester | van Riel P.L.C.M.,Radboud University Nijmegen
Seminars in Arthritis and Rheumatism | Year: 2014

Objective: The disease burden in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) extends beyond the joint. This article evaluates the physical and psychosocial extra-articular burden of treated RA and relationships among diverse disease manifestations. Methods: MEDLINE searches identified papers published in English from January 2003 to December 2012 that evaluated systemic complications and psychosocial aspects associated with RA. Preference was given to studies with randomized cohorts and large (>100) sample sizes. Of 378 articles identified in the initial search, 118 were selected for inclusion. Results: RA is associated with multiple comorbidities and psychosocial impairments, including cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, interstitial lung disease, infection, malignancies, fatigue, depression, cognitive dysfunction, reduced work performance, work disability, and decreased health-related quality of life. The etiology of the extra-articular burden may reflect the systemic inflammation and immune system alteration associated with RA, metabolic imbalances and side effects related to treatment, or the influence of comorbidities. Strategies that may help to reduce the extra-articular disease burden include personalized medicine and the potential introduction of treatments with new mechanisms of action. Conclusion: Despite improvements in treating joint disease, the extra-articular burden in RA remains substantial, encompassing multiple comorbidities and psychosocial impairments. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.


Abdullah M.,Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust | Stonelake P.,Russells Hall Hospital
BMJ Case Reports | Year: 2016

A very rare case of traumatic diaphragmatic hernia is reported in a 65-year-old woman who presented 46â €...years after her initial thoracoabdominal injury with tension faecopneumothorax caused by a perforated colon in the chest cavity. She presented in a critical condition with severe respiratory distress, sepsis and acute kidney injury. She had a long-standing history of bronchial asthma with respiratory complications and had experienced progressive shortness of breath for the past year. A recent CT scan had excluded the presence of a diaphragmatic hernia but showed a significantly raised left hemidiaphragm. On admission, chest X-rays showed a significantly raised left hemidiaphragm and mediastinal shift, but the possibility of a diaphragmatic hernia with strangulated bowel in the chest was not suspected until the patient was reviewed by the surgical and intensive care unit consultants the next morning and a repeat CT performed. She had a successful outcome after her emergency operation. © 2016 BMJ Publishing Group Ltd.

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