Rheumatoid arthritis: lower mortality in more recent cohort of Canadian patients

Access to the full content of this site is available only to registered healthcare professionals. Register to read more


  • Mortality among patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) improved over time in a Canadian study.

Why this matters

  • Better treatment might be improving RA survival.

Study design

  • Population cohort study of all new patients with RA diagnosed in British Columbia between 1996 and 2006, matched with control patients from the general population by sex, age, and index year (24,914 in both groups), to compare 5-y all-cause and disease-specific mortality.
  • Subcohorts: RA onset in 1996-2000 and RA onset in 2001-2006.
  • Funding: Canadian Institute for Health Research.

Key results

  • At baseline, patients with RA had higher incidence of COPD, cardiovascular disease (CVD), and hospitalizations (P<.001 for all), but no significant difference in overall comorbidity.
  • In an age adjusted calculation, there were reductions from the earlier to the...