New research: rheumatoid arthritis treatment may be too slow

University of Otago researchers suggest current treatment methods for rheumatoid arthrisis may be too slow to control the debilitating joint damage that goes with the disease which affects one per cent of New Zealanders.

Researchers in Christchurch measured active forms of methotrexate in blood cells in patients starting and stopping treatment and found that it takes much longer than initially thought for the drug to reach steady blood levels.

The research is published in the November issue of the journal Arthritis and Rheumatism, and was funded by the Health Research Council of New Zealand and Arthritis New Zealand.

For further details contact research co-author Dr Lisa Stamp, 03 364 062 or 027 382 6506