Background Early diagnosis is important for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PSA) and ankylosing spondylitis (AS). Little is known about the duration of symptoms before establishment of diagnosis, and if the duration has changed during recent years.
Objectives To study time from symptoms to diagnosis in RA, PSA and AS patients using data from DANBIO from year 2000 to 2011
Methods Month and year of initial symptoms and diagnosis as well as gender, year of birth, hospital and date of first entry into DANBIO were available in pts with RA (n=10,737), PSA (1,970), AS (1,334). Duration from symptom onset to diagnosis was modeled using generalized linear regression. Predicted values represent adjusted mean durations dependent of year of symptom onset. The patients with valid data (RA/PSA/AS: 73%/68%/65%) did not differ significantly from the whole population, except for more missing data in the early years.
Results The figure shows the mean duration (in months) from initial symptoms to diagnosis adjusted for gender, age (10 year age groups), year of DANBIO entry and geographical region. The duration from symptom to diagnosis for both RA, PSA and AS declined steadily during the period from 30, 52 and 68 months in year 2000, respectively, to 3-4 months by year 2011.
Conclusions Since 2000, a dramatic reduction in the duration from symptoms to diagnosis in RA, PSA and AS occurred, probably reflecting a stronger awareness of the importance of early referral and diagnosis.
References Hetland. Rheumatology 2011;50:69-77
Disclosure of Interest None Declared