Rheumatoid arthritis linked to peripheral artery disease
Tayser Zoubi, from Flinders University in Adelaide, Australia, and Hendry Gordon, Ph.D., from Glasgow Caledonian University in the United Kingdom, conducted a systematic literature review to examine the association between RA and PAD, including the impact of disease concomitance on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and functional capacity.
Based on 11 included studies, the researchers found grade II levels of evidence to support the positive association between RA and PAD. The evidence was graded “I” for the association between the ankle-brachial pressure index and RA, suggesting RA may be an independent risk factor for arterial obstruction or incompressibility. There was not enough evidence to assess the impact of concomitant manifestations on HRQoL and functional capacity.
“Multimorbid patient presentations act to accentuate the incidence risk of PAD in RA. The systematic inflammatory nature of RA likely contributes to the increased incidence of PAD within the population,” the authors write. “Future studies will benefit from controlling for exercise as a prominent PAD risk factor and establishing the impact of symptomatic PAD on HRQoL and functional capacity in the RA population.”