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Lyme disease vaccine doesn't cause inflammatory arthritis. (Preliminary Data).

CHICAGO -- Exposure to Lyme disease vaccine did not increase the risk for inflammatory arthritis, based on preliminary data from a postmarketing study sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals.

Arthropathy codes appeared in the medical charts of 16% of Lyme disease vaccine recipients and 14% of unvaccinated controls seen at Harvard Pilgrim HMO between Jan. 1, 1999, and Oct. 31, 2000, Dr. K. Arnold Chan said at the Annual Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy sponsored by the American Society for Microbiology.

The controls were HMO members from the same medical practice, matched for age and sex. The study population included more than 5,000 vaccinees and about 14,000 unexposed members of the Boston-based Harvard Pilgrim, Boston, and HealthPartners in Minnesota.

First occurrences of rheumatoid arthritis (ICD-9 code 714.0) were found in 11(0.3%) of 3,663 vaccinees and in 30 (0.3%) of 9,809 unexposed HMO members. Similar rates were seen for other rheumatologic diagnoses, such as unspecified inflammatory polyarthropathy (714.9). That code was found in the medical charts of six vaccinees (0.2%) and of nine unexposed (0.1%) HMO members, said Dr. Chan of the department of epidemiology, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.

Of the 25% of potential cases reviewed thus far, less than 10% of subjects with diagnostic codes of interest had inflammatory arthritis. The majority had trauma or other types of joint pain, Dr. Chan said.

These data must be viewed in the context of the background rate of arthropathy In a study conducted by Dr. Chan and his associates, the incidence of rheumatoid arthritis in central Massachusetts was 22 cases per 100,000 men and 60 cases per 100,000 women (Arthritis Rheum. 36[12]:1691-96, 1993).
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Author:Tucker, Miriam E.
Publication:Clinical Psychiatry News
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2002
Words:285
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