Researchers name it the weight problems paradox: the phenomenon, noticed in research of sufferers with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and different persistent situations, the place sufferers who’re overweight have a decrease threat of demise than those that weigh much less. But most of those research centered on sufferers who have RA for a few years, and concerned comparatively little follow-up previous to demise. Researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital evaluated the impact of RA prognosis on weight change and the way this subsequently impacts mortality threat. They did this by evaluating ladies from the Nurses’ Health Study who had been recognized with RA to an analogous group of ladies who had not been recognized with RA. Their outcomes counsel that the findings from earlier research concerning decrease weight being related to larger mortality may not be instantly associated to RA and as an alternative mirror a extra generalized phenomenon. Their research is revealed this week in Arthritis & Rheumatology.
“Our findings are important because they show that weight gain does not offer a mortality benefit for patients with RA,” mentioned Jeffrey Sparks. “Our observations indicate that clinicians can encourage healthy weight loss strategies for RA patients.”
Prior research testing the connection between RA and weight reduction have sometimes been carried out by together with solely sufferers with RA, making it unclear whether or not the patterns reported had been particular to RA or associated to common inhabitants that was frail and of superior age. In the present research, the analysis crew narrowed in on the early RA interval across the time when ladies had been recognized with RA, two to 4 years after prognosis or an analogous interval for girls who had been comparators. In each RA and the comparator teams, those that had extreme weight reduction (30 kilos or extra) had the very best threat of demise a long time later. This elevated mortality threat for extreme weight reduction was almost certainly associated to unintentional weight reduction, moderately than wholesome weight reduction. Weight acquire on this early RA or index interval had no impact on mortality threat for both the RA or comparator teams.
“There has been a question among clinicians of whether obesity might offer a mortality benefit for patients with RA, but our data suggest that weight gain was not protective. Instead, we wonder whether people who gain or maintain weight have better observed mortality rates because they aren’t sick, unlike those who unintentionally lose weight,” mentioned Sparks.
The analysis crew accounted for sure components — akin to bodily exercise and eating regimen — that may contribute to weight reduction, however sooner or later, wish to perceive the mechanisms for the way weight change may affect threat of demise.
Materials supplied by Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Note: Content may be edited for model and size.