Patients suffering from arthritis may benefit from being part of a patient support program, according to a study conducted by AbbVie, a Chicago-based pharmaceutical company that manufactures the arthritis drug Humira (adalimumab).
The 78-week PASSION study, which drew subjects from locations as diverse as Europe, Australia, Israel and Mexico, followed the treatment of patients prescribed Humira to treat their moderate to severe arthritis, AbbVie said in a release. The findings were presented in Madrid at the annual European Congress of Rheumatology.
Test subjects were given an information kit on how to use the medicine, a number to call for help and access to in-home nursing services, the release said. By the time the research project had wrapped up, 48 percent of patients who used the patient support program saw improvement versus 38 percent who didn't use the program.
Across the globe, nearly 24 million people suffer with rheumatoid arthritis, the release said.
The study’s lead investigator, Professor Filip Van Den Bosch of Ghent University Hospital in Belgium, said the research shows it often takes more than a pill to treat severe illnesses like arthritis.
“We have the ability to treat rheumatoid arthritis with therapies that have had a positive clinical impact, but it is also important to further understand what patients living with this disease need beyond medicine, including access to patient support programs,” Van Den Bosch said in the release.