Cardiovascular co-morbidity in rheumatic diseases

Carl Turesson, Lennart T.H. Jacobsson, Eric L. Matteson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

80 Scopus citations

Abstract

Patients with rheumatic disorders have an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). This excess co-morbidity is not fully explained by traditional risk factors. Disease severity is a major risk factor for CVD in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Shared disease mechanisms in atherosclerosis and rheumatic disorders include immune dysregulation and inflammatory pathways, which are potential targets for therapy. Lessons from RA and SLE may have implications for future research on the pathogenesis of atherosclerotic vascular disease in general. Recent data indicate that suppression of inflammation reduces the risk of CVD morbidity and mortality in patients with severe RA. The modest, but clinically relevant, efficacy of atorvastatin treatment in RA adds to the evidence for important anti-inflammatory properties for statins. There is increased recognition of the need for structured preventive strategies to reduce the risk of CVD in patients with rheumatic disease. Such strategies should be based on insights into the role of inflammation in CVD, as well as optimal management of life style related risk factors. In this review, the research agenda for understanding and preventing CVD co-morbidity in patients with rheumatic disorders is discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)605-614
Number of pages10
JournalVascular health and risk management
Volume4
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 31 2008

Keywords

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Inflammation
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Hematology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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