Pharmacological conditioning in the treatment of recent-onset rheumatoid arthritis: a randomized controlled trial study protocol
SourceTrials, 21, 1, (2020), article 15
Article / Letter to editor
Display more detailsDisplay less details
SubjectRadboudumc 5: Inflammatory diseases RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
BACKGROUND: In pharmacological conditioning associations are formed between the effects of medication and contextual factors related to the medication. Pharmacological conditioning with placebo medication can result in comparable treatment effects and reduced side effects compared to regular treatment in various clinical populations, and may be applied to achieve enhanced drug effects. In the current study protocol, pharmacological conditioning is applied to achieve enhanced treatment effects in patients with recent-onset rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The results from this study broaden the knowledge on the potential of pharmacological conditioning and provide a potential innovative treatment option to optimize long-term pharmacological treatment effectiveness for patients with inflammatory conditions, such as recent-onset RA. METHODS: A multicenter, randomized controlled clinical trial is conducted in patients with recent-onset RA. Participants start on standardized pharmacological treatment for 16 weeks, which consists of methotrexate (MTX) 15 mg/week and a tapered schedule of prednisone 60 mg or 30 mg. After 4 months, participants in clinical remission (based on the rheumatologist's opinion and a targeted score below 1.6 on a 44-joint disease activity score (DAS44)) are randomized to 1 of 2 groups: (1) the control group (C), which continues with a standardized treatment schedule of MTX 15 mg/week or (2) the pharmacological conditioning group (PC), which receives an MTX treatment schedule in alternating high and low dosages. In the case of persistent clinical remission after 8 months, treatment is tapered and discontinued linearly in the C group and variably in the PC group. Both groups receive the same cumulative amount of MTX during each period. Logistic regression analysis is used to compare the proportion of participants with drug-free clinical remission after 12 months between the C group and the PC group. Secondary outcome measures include clinical functioning, laboratory assessments, and self-reported measures after each 4-month period up to 18 months after study start. DISCUSSION: The results from this study broaden the knowledge on the potential of pharmacological conditioning and provide a potential innovative treatment option to optimize long-term pharmacological treatment effectiveness in patients with inflammatory conditions, such as recent-onset RA. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Netherlands Trial Register, NL5652. Registered on 3 March 2016.
Upload full text
Use your RU credentials (u/z-number and password) tolog in with SURFconextto upload a file for processing by the repository team.