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Table 2 Outcomes in the IMPROVED-study population after 2 years

From: Two-year results of disease activity score (DAS)-remission-steered treatment strategies aiming at drug-free remission in early arthritis patients (the IMPROVED-study)

  Total n = 610 Early remission n = 387 Arm 1 n = 83 Arm 2 n = 78 P value arm 1 vs 2 OOP n = 50
DAS, mean ± SD 1.5 ± 0.8 1.3 ± 0.8 2.0 ± 0.7 1.9 ± 0.9 0.45 1.9 ± 0.7
HAQ, mean ± SD 0.5 ± 0.6 0.4 ± 0.5 0.9 ± 0.7 0.8 ± 0.7 0.55 0.8 ± 0.7
Swollen joint count, median (IQR) 0 (0–1) 0 (0–1) 1 (0–2) 0 (0–2) 0.25 0 (0–2)
Tender joint count, median (IQR) 1 (0–3) 0 (0–2) 3 (2–5) 3 (1–6) 0.84 2 (1–4)
ESR mm/h, median (IQR) 9 (5–17) 8 (4–16) 11 (6–20) 9 (6–17) 0.19 14 (7–25)
VAS global health (mm), mean ± SD 22 ± 22 18 ± 21 30 ± 21 28 ± 24 0.61 32 ± 22
Total SHS, median (IQR) 0 (0–0.5) 0 (0–0.5) 0 (0–1.1) 0 (0–0) 0.12 0 (0–0.3)
Erosive, n (%) 50 (8) 39 (10) 2 (2) 8 (10) 0.04 1 (2)
SHS progression, n (%) 50 (8) 33 (9) 9 (11) 5 (6) 0.31 3 (6)
DAS-remission, n (%) 301 (49) 241 (62) 22 (27) 24 (31) 0.76 14 (28)
Drug-free remission, n (%) 131 (22) 111 (29) 6 (7) 7 (9) 0.73 7 (14)
ACR/EULAR remission, n (%) 138 (23) 117 (30) 2 (2) 14 (18) 0.001 5 (10)
  1. After 4 months 12 patients were lost to follow up and 598 patients were categorized. Arm 1: randomized after 4 months to methotrexate, sulphasalazine, hydroxychloroquine and low-dose prednisone. Arm 2: randomized after 4 months to methotrexate and adalimumab. OOP outside of protocol, SD standard deviation, IQR interquartile range, n number, DAS disease activity score, HAQ health assessment questionnaire, ESR erythrocyte sedimentation rate, VAS visual analogue scale, SHS Sharp-van de Heijde score, Erosive at least 1 erosion, Progression increase in SHS ≥0.5 points, DAS-remission DAS <1.6 [24], ACR/EULAR remission provisional Boolean-based remission definition published by the American College of Rheumatology and the European League Against Rheumatism based on a 44-joint count [26]