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Carol Eustice

Do Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients Treated With Biologics Prefer Intravenous Administration or Self-Injection?

By November 21, 2013

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doctorpatientAt the annual meeting of the American College of Rheumatology, held in October 2013, survey data presented by Janssen Scientific Affairs, LLC and CreakyJoints revealed that rheumatoid arthritis patients are more open to being treated with subcutaneous or intravenous biologic drugs than doctors thought. The study involved 243 rheumatoid arthritis patients and 103 physicians, for the purpose of comparing their perspectives.

Results showed that 53% of patients were open to both subcutaneous injection at home or intravenous administration of biologic drugs in a doctor's office, if either was prescribed or suggested by their doctor. That's higher than the 41% of patients that doctors expected would be open to both types of biologic drug administration. Results also indicated that 16% of surveyed patients were open only to subcutaneous injection, 14% were only open to intravenous administration, and 16% were not open to either. Prescribers expected 34% to be open only to subcutaneous injection, 13% to I.V. and 12% to neither.

Of surveyed patients, 28% preferred I.V. administered by a healthcare professional over subcutaneous self-injection (doctors expected it to be 16%). About 22% of patients had no preference, while 49% preferred subcutaneous self-injection. Doctors thought 31% had no preference and 52% preferred subcutaneous self-injection at home. Why are these results significant? The results show that it is important for both the doctor and patient to be involved in decision-making when considering biologic drugs and options regarding administration of the drugs.

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