Golimumab for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis after the failure of previous disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs

NICE technology appraisals [TA225] Published date:

NICE recommends golimumab as a possible treatment for some adults with rheumatoid arthritis in the same circumstances as other drugs for the condition (see ‘Who can have golimumab?1’ below). Golimumab for rheumatoid arthritis needs to be given in combination with a drug called methotrexate.

Who can have golimumab?1

You should be able to have golimumab therapy if:

  • you have severe active rheumatoid arthritis as assessed by a rheumatologist on two separate occasions and you have already tried drugs known as 'conventional' disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (or DMARDs for short), including methotrexate, but these drugs haven’t worked

or

  • you have severe active rheumatoid arthritis and you have already tried other types of DMARDs, including a DMARD known as a tumour necrosis factor (or TNF for short) inhibitor, but these drugs haven’t worked, and you cannot take rituximab therapy for medical reasons or because you had a bad reaction to it.

Your treatment should be carried out by a specialist rheumatology team. After the first 6 months you should be able to keep having golimumab therapy only if it is clearly improving your rheumatoid arthritis. You should have check-ups every 6 months after that to make sure your golimumab therapy is still working.

1The circumstances described in this section are the same circumstances in which NICE recommends adalimumab, etanercept and infliximab (see www.nice.org.uk/guidance/TA130) and adalimumab, etanercept, infliximab, rituximab and abatacept (see www.nice.org.uk/guidance/TA195).

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