Perform a systematic literature review (SLR) on risk and prognosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection and vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 in patients with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs).
Literature was searched up to 31 May 2021, including (randomised) controlled trials and observational studies with patients with RMD. Pending quality assessment, data extraction was performed and risk of bias (RoB) was assessed. Quality assessment required provision of (1) an appropriate COVID-19 case definition, and (2a) a base incidence (for incidence data) or (2b) a comparator, >10 cases with the outcome and risk estimates minimally adjusted for age, sex and comorbidities (for risk factor data).
Of 5165 records, 208 were included, of which 90 passed quality assessment and data were extracted for incidence (n=42), risk factor (n=42) or vaccination (n=14). Most studies had unclear/high RoB. Generally, patients with RMDs do not face more risk of contracting SARS-CoV-2 (n=26 studies) or worse prognosis of COVID-19 (n=14) than individuals without RMDs. No consistent differences in risk of developing (severe) COVID-19 were found between different RMDs (n=19). Disease activity is associated with worse COVID-19 prognosis (n=2), possibly explaining the increased risk seen for glucocorticoid use (n=13). Rituximab is associated with worse COVID-19 prognosis (n=7) and possibly Janus kinase inhibitors (n=3). Vaccination is generally immunogenic, though antibody responses are lower than in controls. Vaccine immunogenicity is negatively associated with older age, rituximab and mycophenolate.
This SLR informed the July 2021 update of the European Alliance of Associations for Rheumatology recommendations for the management of RMDs in the context of SARS-CoV-2.

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