Current trends in colchicine treatment in familial Mediterranean fever

Micaela La Regina, Eldad Ben-Chetrit, Armen Yuri Gasparyan, Avi Livneh, Huri Ozdogan, Raffaele Manna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives. Since the publication of the first reports on the efficiency of colchicine in familial Mediterranean fever (FMF), very few randomised studies have investigated issues related to its long-term use. Thus, different approaches taken by physicians involved in FMF care, are exclusively empiric, emulative, and based on case-reports or case-series. Problems such as colchicine intolerance and colchicine resistance have not been solved yet. This paper aims to evaluate trends in colchicine therapy among physicians taking care of FMF patients around the world. Methods. We conducted a survey by sending questionnaires to FMF research and treatment centres in Europe and Asia. Many issues (such as dosages, schedules, side effects, interactions, efficacy and toxicity monitoring, definition of colchicine intolerance, colchicine resistance and responsiveness, etc) have been investigated. When more than 70% of physicians responded giving similar answers to an item, the response was considered as a "trend". A comparison between answers of physicians from FMF-prevalent and non-prevalent countries was also made. Results. Thirty-five physicians from 11 countries filled the questionnaires, taking care of a total of more than 15000 FMF patients (pts). Different approaches were evident among the various physicians. Statistically significant different approaches between physicians from FMF-prevalent countries with respect to those from non-prevalent countries were found in items like colchicine during pregnancy, severity score and blood tests for disease monitoring. No consensus was found regarding the definition of colchicine resistance. Conclusion. The current study demonstrated significant variations in the strategy of colchicine therapy for FMF around the world and re-emphasised the need for standardised definitions of colchicine resistance and colchicine intolerance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S41-S46
JournalClinical and Experimental Rheumatology
Issue numberSUPPL.77
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Colchicine
  • Familial Mediterranean fever


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