Background Physical inactivity in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a major problem with increased risks of co-morbidity and premature death. In order to address this problem we need more knowledge on factors that could change sedentary behavior and promote physical activity.
Objectives The aim of this study was to investigate whether there is a correlation between self rated physical activity and outcome expectations of physical activity (OEPA) regarding health and symptoms of RA.
Methods Demographics and disease-related data, data on self rated physical activity with the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) and outcome expectations of physical activity (OEPA) were collected from 3152 (2309 women and 843 men) patients with RA. Patients were independent in daily life, Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ) <2, had a median age of 62 (range 18-75), and relatively low disease activity with a median disease activity score (DAS 28) of 2.82 (range 0.15-7.62). OEPA were measured with two study-specific questions on expectations of benefits of physical activity on (i) general health and on (ii) symptoms of RA respectively. The two questions were answered on numerical rating scales (1 to 10). Correlations were analyzed with Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient.
Results Analyses showed high scores on the two OEPA- questions, median 10 (range 1-10) and median 8 (range 1-10) respectively. Moderate or high intensity physical activity performance were both reported as median 3 (range 0-7) days per week. No correlations (r ≤0.09) were found between physical activity at moderate or high intensities and Outcome expectations regarding either general health or symptoms of RA.
Conclusions In conclusion our results indicate that patients with RA in Sweden are well aware of the benefits and positive effects of physical activity on long-term health as well as on the symptoms of RA. However, we found no correlation between outcome expectations of physical activity and self-reported physical activity. The role of outcome expectations in motivating patients to be more physically active is still unclear and more situation specific scales are needed to study this further.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared
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