Induction of remission in Wegener's granulomatosis with low dose methotrexate

Kirsten De Groot*, Martin Mühler, Eva Reinhold-Keller, Jens Paulsen, Wolfgang L. Gross

*Corresponding author for this work
123 Citations (Scopus)


Objective. To study the efficacy of methotrexate (MTX) plus low dose corticosteroids for induction of remission in generalized Wegener's granulomatosis (WG) and to possibly identify predictive factors for the outcome under this therapy. Methods. We conducted a prospective, open label study, including 17 patients with not immediately life threatening, generalized WG. Treatment consisted of intravenous MTX 0.3 mg/kg once weekly plus daily oral low dose prednisone for initial diagnosis of WG in 11 and for a generalized relapse of WG in 6 patients. Interdisciplinary, standardized assessments of disease activity and extent were clone 3-monthly. Results. Within a median treatment period of 24.5 months remission could be achieved in 10/17 patients (59%), their median corticosteroid dose during that time was 1.75 mg/day. Seven patients with a median concomitant prednisone dose of 7.5 mg/day did not respond, among them 4 patients who were treated for a relapse of WG. Signs of de novo glomerulonephritis occurred in 5 of the 7 nonresponders. Significant side effects, including opportunistic infections, did not occur. Conclusion. Weekly low dose MTX in combination with low dose corticosteroids leads to an acceptable remission rate of almost 60% without significant side effects. Patients treated for a relapse of WG and patients with a need for a higher concomitant prednisone dose seem to be at risk for non response, with a high likelihood of developing de novo glomerulonephritis.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Rheumatology
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)492-495
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 03.1998

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Infection and Inflammation Research (ZIEL)


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