Armaan M Nazir, Bhavya Koganti, Kunal Gupta, Marrium S Memon, Muhammad Bin Aslam Zahid, Vignarth Shantha Kumar, Mamatha Tappiti, Jihan A Mostafa
California Institute of Behavioral Neurosciences & Psychology, USA
Scientific Tracks Abstracts: J Clin Exp Cardiology
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is one of the most common autoimmune diseases present today. Although treatment options may differ among clinicians, a commonly prescribed treatment is hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), alone or in combination with other medications. HCQ has been studied for its immunomodulatory effects as well as its role in treating adverse conditions associated with RA. This systematic review examined the use of HCQ therapy in RA patients. A systematic search for relevant literature through PubMed, National Institute of Informatics, Japan (CiNii), and Science Direct databases were carried out in August 2021. Literature directly related to HCQ therapy for RA patients, RA-associated chronic kidney disease, and cardiovascular disease (including lipid profile) was considered relevant. HCQ associated retinopathic adverse effects were also selected for this review. Thirty-eight articles were found to be relevant, passed quality assessment, and were included in this review. Nine articles discussed HCQ therapy in comparison with other therapies (mainly methotrexate and sulfasalazine), but were contradictory in their outcomes, as were the seven papers that reviewed kidney function in RA patients with and without HCQ. Five articles credited better cardiovascular outcomes to RA patients taking HCQ. Sixteen articles studied the relationship between HCQ and retinal toxicity, providing insights into the risks associated with HCQ therapy. HCQ therapy was found not only to be beneficial in slowing the disease progression in RA patients but enhanced the effects of methotrexate in treating RA as well. Data strongly associates HCQ therapy with the mitigation of RA-related cardiovascular and kidney conditions. However, if HCQ is prescribed, it is imperative to be aware of the possible (although rare) retinopathic adverse effects associated with this therapy.