Research

 Using Decision Aids to Communicate Risks of Therapies for RA

Effective communication of benefits and potential complications of both disease and treatment is essential to medical care. Today patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have multiple treatment options available, each with distinct risk profiles and tradeoffs. In any situation where people try to plan, they want information about alternatives and the ability to assess risk and ask, "What if?"  The object of the study is to create an online interactive game that provides information and lets patients explore as many scenarios as they wish, looking at best, worst and expected outcomes for each option. Our future goal for the study is to test the game's effectiveness on treatment decisions and medication adherence in a randomized controlled trial. 

Febuxostat and Allopurinol Cardiovascular Safety in Gout Patients

Gout is caused by high levels of uric acid  in the body, called hyperuricemia. This can be treated with febuxostat or allopurinol, both drugs that lower urate levels in the blood. In previous studies with these drugs, febuxostat has had a higher rate of complications involving heart and blood vessels. These studies were too small to give evidence of causation for the complications, but concluded that there is a correlation between the drug and complications. This randomized, double-blind study is intended to follow gout patients for a period of five years to study the cardiovascular complications of febuxostat versus allopurinol.