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Penicillamine in rheumatoid arthritis


The use of penicillamine (Distamine - Dista; Cuprimine - MSD) for rheumatoid arthritis followed the observation that its administration caused a fall in levels of rheumatoid factor in the serum.1 2 This fall was associated with clinical improvement, and both continued for some months after the drug was stopped.3–5 The authors suggested that the serological changes were not due solely to intravascular depolymerisation of rheumatoid factor, but to some effect on the disease process.

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