Episode 066: Do we need greater stratification of routine blood test monitoring in people on DMARDs?

In this episode we talk to Dr Simon Fraser who is an associate professor of public health at the School of Primary Care at the University of Southampton.

Paper: Persistently normal blood tests in patients taking methotrexate for RA or azathioprine for IBD: a retrospective cohort study

Clinical guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends 3-monthly blood-tests for the ongoing safety monitoring of conventional synthetic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs, but questions have been raised about the need for this testing frequency. Using 2 years’ data from a large primary care database, this study found that persistent normality of blood-test results was common and abnormalities were dominated by reduced renal function among older people, with relatively few hepatic or haematological abnormalities. Greater stratification of monitoring may reduce workload and costs for patients and health services, but more evidence is required on the long-term safety, acceptability, and cost-effectiveness of changing current practice.

BJGP research on optimising primary care research dissemination: an online survey

ERGO number: 70228.A1

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The BJGP is the world-leading primary care journal. At BJGP Life we add multi-media comment and opinion for the primary care community.

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