The field of rheumatology has witnessed astonishing progress in the understanding and management of rheumatic diseases since the second half of the twentieth century. Figures from many countries show an increase in the number of people affected. About one in four Americans have been diagnosed with arthritis or other rheumatologic conditions. The Centers for Disease Control predicted that this number would continue to rise exponentially, and by 2040 about 26% of its population (78 million adults) would be diagnosed with a rheumatic disease. In the meantime, clinical trials and treatment approaches in rheumatology are transforming daily.
Even though the prevalence of rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs) is expected to continue rising, patient recruitment still poses a great challenge for pharmaceutical companies running clinical trials in this area. Therefore, finding effective approaches to tackle recruitment and retention challenges offers pharmaceutical companies a good opportunity to accelerate the pace of trials, and thus making it possible to reduce the time to get to market.