Gastrointestinal Adverse Drug Reaction Profile of Etanercept: Real-world Data From Patients and Healthcare Professionals

J.A. van Lint*, N.T. Jessurun, S.W. Tas, B.J.F. van den Bemt, M.T. Nurmohamed, M.B.A. van Doorn, P.I. Spuls, A.M. van Tubergen, P.M. Ten Klooster, E.P. van Puijenbroek, F. Hoentjen, H.E. Vonkeman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objective. We aimed to describe the nature and frequency of gastrointestinal adverse drug reactions (GI-ADR s) of etanercept (ETN) using patient-reported and healthcare professional (HCP)-registered data and compared this frequency with the GI-ADR frequency of the widely used tumor necrosis factor-alpha inhib-itor adalimumab (ADA). Methods. Reported GI-ADRs of ETN for rheumatic diseases were collected from the Dutch Biologic Monitor and DREAM registries. We described the clinical course of GI-ADRs and compared the frequency with ADA in both data sources using Fisher exact test. Results. Out of 416 patients using ETN for inflammatory rheumatic diseases in the Dutch Biologic Monitor, 25 (6%) patients reported 36 GI-ADRs. In the DREAM registries 11 GI-ADRs were registered for 9 patients (2.3%), out of 399 patients using ETN, with an incidence of 7.1 per 1000 patient-years. Most GI-ADRs consisted of diarrhea, nausea, and abdominal pain. GI-ADRs led to ETN discontinuation in 1 patient (4%) and dose adjustment in 4 (16%) in the Dutch Biologic Monitor. Eight GI-ADRs (73%) led to ETN discontinuation in the DREAM registries. The frequency of GI-ADRs of ETN did not significantly differ from GI-ADRs of ADA in both data sources (Dutch Biologic Monitor: ETN 8.7% vs ADA 5.3%, P = 0.07; DREAM: ETN 2.8% vs ADA 4.7%, P = 0.16). Conclusion. Most GI-ADRs associated with ETN concerned gastrointestinal symptoms. These ADRs may lead to dose adjustment or ETN discontinuation. The frequency of ETN-associated GI-ADRs was compa-rable to the frequency of ADA-associated GI-ADRs. Knowledge about these previously unknown ADRs can facilitate early recognition and improve patient communication.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1388-1394
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Rheumatology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2021


  • adverse drug reactions
  • biological therapy
  • drug monitoring
  • drug safety
  • registries

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