Arthritis Research Canada at EULAR 2021

The EULAR European Congress of Rheumatology is the primary platform for exchange of scientific and clinical information in Europe. It seeks to provide a forum of the highest standard for scientific, educational and social exchange between professionals involved in rheumatology. It also incorporates liaising with patient organizations in order to achieve progress in the clinical care of people with rheumatic diseases.

The EULAR Congress attracts more than 18,000 delegates from over 130 countries and usually takes place in a major European city. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the EULAR Congress has moved to a virtual format this year and is taking place over four days between June 2 and 5. 

Day 4: June 5, 2021

Research Spotlight


Prevention of chronic diseases due to inflammation in inflammatory arthritis: Results of a Delphi process to select care recommendations for an electronic medical record (EMR) intervention


We developed a list of care recommendations that will be programmed into electronic medical records as reminders for family physicians to screen their patients with inflammatory arthritis for other chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart disease and osteoporosis. The recommendations were pulled from local, national and international clinical guidelines and voted on by a group of physicians and patients; the goal of the intervention is to help prevent chronic disease in patients with inflammatory arthritis.

Research Team: Sheriff I, Lima A, Tseng O, Avina-Zubieta JA, Dawes M, Barber C, Esdaile J, Shojania K, Koehn C, Hoens AM, McQuitty S, Singh S, Yap J, Page D. Kur J. Hobson B, Price M, Lacaille D

To learn more about Arthritis Research Canada research presented at the EULAR European Congress of Rheumatology (Day 4), please scroll down.

Identifying meaningful and detectable change from the patient perspective across common fatigue measures in rheumatoid arthritis

This study provides the patient perspective on what amount of change in fatigue, when evaluated with different fatigue questionnaires, represents a meaningful improvement or worsening between visits. This information is useful to researchers and people designing clinical trials, to see the impact of treatments on fatigue, and to clinicians who monitor fatigue in people with RA.

Research Team: Bartlett SJ, Haque U, Bykerk V, Curtis JR, Jones M, Bingham C

Anatomical locations and correlates of calcium pyrophosphate crystalk deposits of the spine – pathologic examination of 77 surgical cases

Calcium pyrophosphate deposition disease (CPPD) is a type of arthritis where crystals develop on the joints and surrounding tissues, causing pain, similar to gout. For people with CPPD, crystal formation on the spine was thought to be rare. We identified 77 patients with CPPD of the spine treated at Massachusetts General Hospital between 2009 and 2014 and found that the crystals occurred most often on the ligaments that connect spinal vertebrae and the discs between spinal vertebrae.

Research Team: Dau, J, Ho G, Choi HK, Schwab J, Kohler M

Risk factors for polyarticular gout flares – analysis of a longitudinal online gout follow-up study

Using data from an internet-based study, we looked at the risk factors for gout flares affecting multiple joints at the same time. We found that obesity, heart failure, and osteoarthritis increased the risk of having this type of gout flare, but higher education levels were associated with a lower risk.

Research Team: Dau J, McCormick N, Stratton S, Yokose C, Chen C, Neogi T, Hunter D, Saag K, Zhang Y, Choi HK

Patient-perceived aspects of rheumatoid arthritis flare evolve over time, as reflected by the flare RA Questionnaire: Post-hoc analysis of TapERA

A questionnaire designed to assess flares in rheumatoid arthritis was compared in the context of reducing anti TNF medications, compared to when it was initially designed. The study underlines the usefulness of the questionnaire in providing a multi-faceted view of patients’ conceptions of RA flare. However, these aspects and their relative importance seem to evolve over time, or depending on the clinical context.

Research Team: Doumen M, Pazmino s, Bertrant D, De Cock D, Joly J, Westhovens R, Verschueren P, Bartlett SJ

Hyperinflammation and clinical outcomes for patients with systemic rheumatic diseases hospitalized for COVID-19: A comparative cohort study

Individuals with rheumatic diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, may be at increased risk of poor COVID-19 outcomes. We compared 57 hospitalized rheumatic disease patients with COVID-19 to 232 hospitalized COVID-19 patients without a rheumatic disease and found that those with a rheumatic disease had a greater risk of admission to the intensive care unit or receiving mechanical ventilation.

Research Team: Hsu T, D’silva K, Serling-Boyd N, Wang J, Mueller A, Fu X, Prisco L, Martin L, Vannni K Zaccardelli A, Cook C, Choi HK, Zhang Y, Gravallese E, Wallace Z, Sparks J

Underserved populations identify barriers and propose solutions for self-managing arthritis and chronic conditions

The study objective was to bring together people living with arthritis and other chronic conditions from underserved communities, to identify common barriers they face in taking care of their conditions in daily life, and to determine their solutions to the identified challenges. Individuals who were ethnic minorities, immigrants, refugees, low-income, over 65, and/or housing insecure and living with arthritis identified 35 common barriers and made recommendations in the areas of financial difficulties, social services, access to health services, quality of health services, lack of knowledge, and mental health.

Research Team: Mills S, Khehra K, Ghuman P, Au D, Koehn C, Maynard R, Clark N, Davis C, Cui A, Hamilton C, Lacaille D

Identifying potential classification criteria for calcium pyrophosphate deposition disease (CPPD): Results from the initial phases

We report interim results on the selection of disease features for the development of classification criteria for calcium pyrophosphate deposition disease (CPPD), an arthritis similar to gout that involves the development of crystals on joints and surrounding tissues. These criteria will facilitate clinical CPPD research by distinguishing between CPPD and other arthritis types. The 56 candidate items include clinical, imaging, and laboratory features.

Research Team: Tedeschi S, Pascart T, Latourte A, Godsave C, Kundaki B, Naden R, Taylor W, Dalbeth N, Neogi T, Perez-Ruiz F, Rosenthal A, Becce F, Pascual E, Andrés M, Bardin T, Doherty M, Ea HK, Filippou G, Fitzgerald J, Gutierrez1 M, Iagnocco A, Jansen T, Kohler M, Lioté F, Matza M, Mccarthy G, Ramonda R, Reginato A, Richette P, Singh J, Sivera F, So A, Stamp L, Yinh J, Yokose C, Terkeltaub R, Choi HK, Abhishek A

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