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Comorbidities in rheumatic diseases - from clinical to translational approaches

Rheumatic diseases have a significant burden and impact on healthcare systems and are one of the most common causes of disability and work-related absences. However, in addition to the disease burden itself, patients with rheumatic diseases are also at an increased risk of developing a variety of comorbid conditions. These comorbid conditions can arise as a result of the disease itself, but also from its treatment. Over recent years, a growing list of comorbidities have been identified that are frequently associated with rheumatic diseases and these include: malignancies, cardiovascular diseases, infections, kidney diseases, lung diseases, sexual dysfunction, dental, and skin issues to name just a few. These comorbidities have a significant effect on the lives of patients and therefore it is important to increase our understanding of these conditions to ensure optimal treatment and improvements in quality of life.

Read the published content in this thematic series covering aspects of research into rheumatic diseases co-morbidities ranging from sexual to cardiovascular function. BMC Rheumatology would like to thank all authors and Editorial Board members who contributed to this collection. Future Thematic Series can be proposed by contacting the Editorial Office of the journal:

  1. Around 1 in 8 patients with axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA) also meet criteria for fibromyalgia and such patients have considerable unmet need. Identifying effective therapy is important but to what extent fib...

    Authors: Gary J. Macfarlane, Ejaz Pathan, Stefan Siebert, Jonathan Packham, Karl Gaffney, Ernest Choy, Raj Sengupta, Fabiola Atzeni, Kathryn R. Martin, Gareth T. Jones and Linda E. Dean
    Citation: BMC Rheumatology 2019 3:19
  2. The details of two rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc) who were administered tocilizumab, an anti-interleukin-6 receptor antibody, are reported, along with a review of the literature.

    Authors: Hiroki Wakabayashi, Hitoshi Kino, Makoto Kondo, Keiichi Yamanaka, Masahiro Hasegawa and Akihiro Sudo
    Citation: BMC Rheumatology 2019 3:15
  3. The pathobiology of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is similar to that of periodontitis in that proinflammatory cytokines play an important pathologic role. There is evidence to suggest that inhibitors of tumor necr...

    Authors: Tetsuo Kobayashi, Satoshi Ito, Akira Murasawa, Hajime Ishikawa and Hiromasa Yoshie
    Citation: BMC Rheumatology 2019 3:13
  4. Uncontrolled gout can cause significant joint and organ damage and has been associated with impairments in quality of life and high economic cost. Gout has also been associated with other comorbid diseases, su...

    Authors: Dena H. Jaffe, Alyssa B. Klein, Arriel Benis, Natalia M. Flores, Hagit Gabay, Robert Morlock, Dana Y. Teltsch, Jonathan Chapnick, Yair Molad, Shmuel M. Giveon, Becca Feldman and Maya Leventer-Roberts
    Citation: BMC Rheumatology 2019 3:11
  5. Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH) is a severe clinical entity associated with high mortality in the adult population. HLH has been associated with infections, malignancy and autoimmune conditions such a...

    Authors: Christina S. Thornton, Parham Minoo, Michelle Schneider and Aurore Fifi-Mah
    Citation: BMC Rheumatology 2019 3:7
  6. Chronic inflammatory arthritis is associated with increased cardiovascular (CV) morbidity and mortality. Pharmacological management and healthy lifestyle modification is recommended to manage these risks, but ...

    Authors: Premarani Sinnathurai, Alexandra Capon, Rachelle Buchbinder, Vibhasha Chand, Lyndall Henderson, Marissa Lassere and Lyn March
    Citation: BMC Rheumatology 2018 2:25
  7. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is markedly increased in patients with rheumatoid arthritis partly due to accelerated atherosclerosis from chronic inflammation. Traditional cardiovascular risk factors such as hyp...

    Authors: Aprajita Jagpal and Iris Navarro-Millán
    Citation: BMC Rheumatology 2018 2:10