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Risk of liver disease in patients with psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis receiving methotrexate: A population-based study

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BACKGROUND: Patients with psoriatic disease may be more susceptible to methotrexate hepatotoxicity than those with rheumatoid arthritis (RA); however, direct evidence supporting this notion is lacking.

OBJECTIVE: To compare liver disease risk among patients with psoriasis (PsO), psoriatic arthritis (PsA), or RA receiving methotrexate.

METHODS: In a population-based cohort study, Danish individuals with PsO, PsA, or RA receiving methotrexate between 1997 and 2015 were compared according to 4 disease outcomes: mild liver disease, moderate-to-severe liver disease, cirrhosis, and cirrhosis-related hospitalization.

RESULTS: Among 5687, 6520, and 28,030 patients with PsO, PsA, and RA, respectively, the incidence rate of any liver disease was greatest for PsO, followed by PsA, and lowest for RA. Compared with patients with RA, patients with PsO were 1.6-3.4 times more likely to develop at least one of the liver disease outcomes, whereas those with PsA were 1.3-1.6 times more likely to develop mild liver disease and cirrhosis after adjusting for demographics, smoking, alcohol use, comorbidities, and methotrexate dose.

LIMITATIONS: Confounding due to unmeasured variables, misclassification, and surveillance bias.

CONCLUSION: PsO, PsA, and RA differentially influence liver disease risk in the setting of methotrexate use independent of other major risk factors. More conservative monitoring should be considered in patients receiving methotrexate for psoriatic disease, particularly in PsO patients.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)1636-1643
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2021 American Academy of Dermatology, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

    Research areas

  • Adult, Aged, Arthritis, Psoriatic/complications, Arthritis, Rheumatoid/complications, Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/diagnosis, Denmark/epidemiology, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Incidence, Liver Cirrhosis/chemically induced, Liver/drug effects, Male, Methotrexate/adverse effects, Middle Aged, Psoriasis/complications, Risk Assessment/statistics & numerical data, Risk Factors, Severity of Illness Index

ID: 72734860