The National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF) have released treatment guidelines for psoriatic arthritis (PsA). The guidelines are significant because they provide health care professionals with the most accurate, up-to-date, evidence-based standards for treating PsA patients.
The guidelines could have a significant impact on the way active PsA is treated, especially for those people with PsA:
- Who have never been treated for PsA
- Who have tried and failed different treatments
The top three recommendations in the guidelines:
Follow a Treat to Target Approach
PsA can cause irreversible joint damage. According to the NPF-ACR guidelines, using a treat-to-target strategy is recommended over not following such a strategy in patients with active PsA. Such an approach may delay or prevent further damage and could improve pain and quality of life. Health care providers should partner with each patient to determine the best treatment plan.
Employ Tumor Necrosis Factor Inhibitor (TNFi) Biologics As First-Line Therapy
According to the guidelines, a TNFi biologic agent is recommended over an oral small molecule as a first-line option in patients who have not received therapy for active PsA. However, certain situations may require an alternate treatment course.
Smoking has been shown to reduce the efficacy of biologics and has long been linked to mortality, cancer, heart disease and lung disease. It is recommended that health care professionals encourage PsA patients to not smoke, offering smoking cessation aids as needed.