Trends of inflammatory markers and cytokines after one month of phototherapy in patients with rheumatoid arthritis

José Meneses Calderón, Irma González Sánchez, Guillermo Aburto Huacuz, Arely Sarai Alonso Barreto, María del Carmen Colín Ferreyra, Hugo Mendieta Zerón


Objective. To evaluate changes in the expression of tumor necrosis  factor-α in patients with rheumatoid arthritis submitted to phototherapy. Materials and methods. This was an open label study, enrolling ten patients. The phototherapy scheme within a range of 425 to 650 nm, 11.33 Joules/cm2, 30 cm above the chest was as follows: a) 45-min daily sessions from Monday to Friday for 2 to 3 months; b) three, 45-min weekly sessions for 1 to 2 months; c) twice weekly 45-min sessions for 1 to 2 months, and d) one weekly session for 1 to 2 months until completion. Erythrocyte sedimentation rate, C-reactive protein and rheumatoid factor were measured in peripheral blood and tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-1β, and interleukin-10 in leukocytes by quantitative real-time Reverse transcriptase-Polymerase chain reaction. In all the patients the next indexes: Karnofsky scale, Rheumatoid Arthritis-specific quality of life instrument, Steinbrocker Functional Capacity Rating and the Visual Analog Scale were evaluated. Results. Erythrocyte sedimentation rate, C-reactive protein, and rheumatoid factor declined notoriously after the indicated sessions. In gene expression, there was a tendency in tumor necrosis factor-α to decrease after 1 month, from 24.5±11.4 to 18±9.2 relative units, without reaching a significant statistical difference. The four tested indexes showed improvement. Conclusion. Phototherapy appears to be a plausible complementary option to reduce the inflammatory component in  rheumatoid arthritis.


Interleukin; Phototherapy; Rheumatoid arthritis; Tumor necrosis factor-α

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