ALBUQUERQUE, NM and SAN DIEGO, CA--(Marketwired - February 16, 2017) - Exagen Diagnostics, Inc., home of AVISE® testing, announced today that United Rheumatology LLC., a leading specialist organization in the United States with over 300 physician members, has prominently recommended testing for methotrexate polyglutimate levels in its clinical practice guidelines for adults with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
These written guidelines provide comprehensive recommendations for United Rheumatology healthcare professionals in the diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring of patients with RA by leveraging evidence based medicine to improve patient quality of life, in the safest and most cost-effective fashion possible.
"United Rheumatology took the time to review scientific literature generated over the past 10 years using our patented AVISE MTX test," said Dr.Thierry Dervieux, Chief Scientific Officer at Exagen. Adding, "they recognized that any patient starting or being maintained on methotrexate therapy and not having an adequate response will benefit from this test."
Dr. Kamran Chaudhary MD, a Rheumatologist with Greater Chicago Specialty Physicians, has been using Avise MTX in his practice and acknowledged "the recommendations in this guideline are an important reminder that this test should be used more often in the management of patients on methotrexate in order to maximize the clinical response of this low-cost anchor drug before advancing to costlier alternatives. Use of this test could potentially save our healthcare system a considerable amount of money while providing quality care."
The timing could not be any better for this announcement, according to Exagen CEO Ron Rocca, "with the January launch of our novel AVISE Touch capillary blood collection method, we have eliminated the need for venipuncture blood draw which is a major hurdle for many patients. Physicians are likely to welcome this advanced approach to optimizing methotrexate given new patient outcome measures being observed by healthcare payers of all types."
AVISE MTX is a patented test measuring the active metabolites of methotrexate circulating in a patient's blood. There is significant variability among patients taking methotrexate in their absorption, excretion, and metabolism of this drug. Studies published in peer reviewed journals show how results from the AVISE MTX test can aid clinical decision making by revealing an individual's exposure levels.
Exagen Diagnostics, Inc. is a College of American Pathologists (CAP) accredited and CLIA certified rheumatology specialty laboratory that focuses on the significant unmet need for accurate and timely diagnosis, prognosis and monitoring of autoimmune connective tissue disease (CTD). Its groundbreaking solutions address the full continuum of care with tools designed and scientifically proven to help physicians deliver accurate, early diagnosis and optimized therapy. For more information, visit www.avisetest.com.
Methotrexate is a Disease-Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drug, or DMARD, that has been used for more than 20 years and is considered the foundation of treatment for RA. Professional guidelines recommend that doctors and healthcare providers use methotrexate as the initial DMARD of choice for RA. In many patients, methotrexate may lower the pain and swelling caused by arthritis and can also lower the damage to joints and the risk of long-term disability. Methotrexate may begin working as early as 3 weeks, but it can take up to 12 weeks to get the full effect. Side effects experienced when taking methotrexate may be offset by taking folic acid.
Exagen, AVISE, and the Exagen and AVISE logos are registered trademarks of Exagen Diagnostics Inc.