Top 10 posters @ ARA ASM

6 minute read

A four-person judging committee rated each of the 126 posters at the 2021 ARA ASM for scientific merit and clarity of message. Here are the top ten.

There were 126 posters submitted to the ARA ASM. A four-person judging committee rated each poster for scientific merit and clarity of message. This is the top ten.

Poster 2: Public and patient perceptions of different diagnostic labels for rotator cuff disease: a content analysis

The labels used to describe rotator cuff disease can alter patients’ expectations of treatment and outcomes, reports Dr Joshua Zadro from the Institute for Musculoskeletal Health at the University of Sydney.

Dr Zadro and co-authors randomised 1308 individuals with or without shoulder pain to one of six labels for a scenario of shoulder pain, then assessed their perceived need for different treatment approaches, and how they felt about their theoretical condition.

They found the label of rotator cuff tear was associated with a greater perceived need for surgery and imaging than the label of bursitis.

Poster 42: Ro positive subset of systemic lupus erythematosus patients has a distinct and more severe disease phenotype

Systemic lupus erythematosus patients who are anti-Ro positive are more likely to experience high disease activity, require higher doses of immunosuppressants and a significant number meet the criteria for Sjogren’s syndrome.

A study of 395 patients with SLE found the 186 patients who were anti-Ro positive spent more time in High Disease Activity Status or with adjusted SLEDAI greater than four, and had higher rates of other autoantibodies such as anti-dsDNA and rheumatoid factor.

Dr Katie Liao, from the Department of Rheumatology at Monash Health, said the findings suggest that SLE and Sjogren’s share a common pathogenesis, and that anti-Ro positivity represented a more severe disease phenotype.

Poster 100: Machine learning accurately classifies temporal artery biopsies in the electronic medical record

Researchers have trained a natural language processing model to classify temporal artery biopsy reports as either positive or negative for giant cell arteritis, and found it is almost as accurate as human designations.

The model was trained using 150 written biopsy reports to look for the number of key phrases relating to giant cell arteritis, and based on the number and type of those phrases, classify the report as either positive or negative.

When applied to a further 36 reports, the model was in agreement with the human report in all but one case, according to the presentation by Dr Christopher McMaster, from the Department of Rheumatology at Austin Health.

Poster 15: What is the prevalence of opioid analgesic use in people with chronic non-cancer pain?

Just over one-quarter of adults with chronic non-cancer pain are using opioids, and the rate is slightly higher among those with chronic low back pain.

A systematic review of 60 observational studies, involving around 3.9 million patients with chronic non-cancer pain, found 26.8% used opioids for their pain, but that rate was 29.8% among adults with chronic low back pain. More patients were taking weak opioids than strong opioids such as oxycodone, according to the presentation by Dr Stephanie Mathieson, from the Institute for Musculoskeletal Health at the University of Sydney.

Rates of opioid use didn’t change over the thirty-year time frames of the studies, and use was higher in North American compared to Europe.

Poster 113: Medication use, comorbidities and disease activity of patients with fibromyalgia in a hospital outpatient clinic

Nearly half of patients with fibromyalgia are using opioids despite a lack of evidence supporting their use, found Dr Thomas Khoo, from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Adelaide, and colleagues.

A study of the electronic medical records for 130 fibromyalgia patients and a survey of 45 of those patients, found around 47% of each group reported taking opioids. The rates of anti-inflammatory use were nearly 2.5 times higher among those surveyed than what was reported in the electronic records, and a much higher proportion of those surveyed reported mental illness compared to what was documented.

One third of patients also reported using cannabinoids on a daily basis.

Poster 115: A comparison between rheumatoid arthritis pain descriptors in unprompted free text from the internet and the McGill Pain Questionnaire

The words patients use to describe their rheumatoid arthritis pain are very different from the related terms in the McGill Pain Questionnaire, suggesting a need for a more updated approach to pain descriptors.

Dr Alwin Lian, from Royal Perth Hospital, and co-authors analysed an existing database of free text on patient’s experience of rheumatoid arthritis, as well as text from social media and online patient fora, and identified the 79 most common words, which they then sorted into the same categories as the McGill Pain Questionnaire.

They found only five McGill Pain Questionnaire terms were in the most common words list – and at significantly lower frequencies than other terms – while four McGill terms weren’t used at all by patients.

Poster 39: Patterns of use of b/tsDMARDS and other medications for patients with rheumatoid arthritis: a retrospective study using PBS data

TNF inhibitors are the most commonly prescribed b/tsDMARDs for rheumatoid arthritis in Australia, and the overall number of patients prescribed DMARDS has increased steadily over recent years.

A study of PBS dispensing data from 2016-2019 showed the number of patients prescribed these drugs increased from nearly 28,000 in 2016 to just over 40,000 in 2019.

Nearly two-thirds of patients were prescribed TNF inhibitors as the first-choice therapy, and nearly half of all patients on DMARDS were also prescribed opioids, according to a presentation by Jing Ye, from NPS MedicineWise.

Poster 67: Patterns and prevalence of cognitive dysfunction in systemic lupus erythematosus

As many as 40% of people with systemic lupus erythematosus experience significant cognitive impairment associated with the disease.

Dr Sudha Raghunath, from the Centre for Inflammatory Disease at Monash University, and co-authors performed cognitive assessments on a cohort of 95 SLE patients and found 39 met criteria for significant impairment.

When compared to 48 healthy controls, the SLE patients showed significantly lower scores for verbal learning and memory, verbal fluency, processing speed, visual memory and complex attention.

Poster 83: Mortality associated with rheumatoid arthritis in Australian Rheumatology Association database participants

Rheumatoid arthritis is associated with higher mortality but only ten years or more after diagnosis.

A study led by Dr Rachel Black from Royal Adelaide Hospital matched 1895 patients in the ARA database with 204 linked deaths recorded in the Australian Death Registry, and compared the data to that from the matched general population.

They saw no mortality gap in the first 10 years after diagnosis, but an 85% higher mortality rate in rheumatoid arthritis patients in the 10-20 years after diagnosis.

Poster 34: Using patient-questionnaires to improve the understanding of sleep disturbance in patients with rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis

More than three-quarters of patients with rheumatoid arthritis and two-thirds of those with psoriatic arthritis report sleep disturbances.

Dr David Martens and colleagues from the Rheumatology Department at Liverpool Hospital used three screening questionnaires to assess sleep disturbance in 109 patients with rheumatoid arthritis and 50 with psoriatic arthritis.

Overall, 77% of those with rheumatoid arthritis and 66% of those with psoriatic arthritis met the criteria for sleep disturbance. The study also found that both Multidimensional Health Assessment Questionnaire and Patient Reported Outcome Measure Information System were ‘reasonable and practical’ alternatives to condition-specific tools.

End of content

No more pages to load

Log In Register ×