Views of primary care physicians and rheumatologists regarding screening and treatment of hyperlipidemia among patients with rheumatoid arthritis

Academic Article

Abstract

  • © 2020 The Author(s). Background: Despite high risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality, screening and treatment of hyperlipidemia in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is suboptimal. We asked primary care physicians (PCPs) and rheumatologists to identify barriers to screening and treatment for hyperlipidemia among patients with RA. Methods: We recruited rheumatologists and PCPs nationally to participate in separate moderated structured group teleconference discussions using the nominal group technique. Participants in each group generated lists of barriers to screening and treatment for hyperlipidemia in patients with RA, then each selected the three most important barriers from this list. The resulting barriers were organized into physician-, patient- and system-level barriers, informed by the socioecological framework. Results: Twenty-seven rheumatologists participated in a total of 3 groups (group size ranged from 7 to 11) and twenty PCPs participated in a total of 3 groups (group size ranged from 4 to 9). Rheumatologists prioritized physician level barriers (e.g. 'ownership' of hyperlipidemia screening and treatment), whereas PCPs prioritized patient-level barriers (e.g. complexity of RA and its treatments). Conclusion: Rheumatologists were conflicted about whether treatment of CVD risk among patients with RA should fall within the role of the rheumatologist or the PCP. All participating PCPs agreed that CVD risk reduction was within their role. Factors that influenced PCPs' decisions for screening and treatment for CVD risk in patients with RA were mainly related to their concern about how treatment for CVD risk could influence RA symptomatology (myalgia from statins) or how inflammation from RA and RA medications influences lipid profiles.
  • Published In

  • BMC Rheumatology  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Navarro-Millán I; Cornelius-Schecter A; O'Beirne RJ; Morris MS; Lui GE; Goodman SM; Cherrington AL; Fraenkel L; Curtis JR; Safford MM
  • Volume

  • 4
  • Issue

  • 1