Perioperative management of patients with rheumatoid arthritis undergoing orthopaedic surgery.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease which is characterised by systemic inflammation. In the recent decades, the advent of disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs have reduced the need for orthopaedic procedures. However, there are numerous patients in which pharmacological treatment fails and these patients require surgical intervention. Complications can arise due to the underlying pathology and multitude of medications these patients can be on, specifically increased infection rates due to use of immunosuppressive agents. An understanding into the disease itself, as well as perioperative management, may improve overall patient outcomes and prevent future complications.