Article Text

AB0212 A study to determine the relationship between fatigue, physical activity and sitting time in patients with inflammatory arthritis.
  1. D. Fitzpatrick1,
  2. B. Mcgowan1,
  3. A. McPartland1,
  4. C. Silke1,
  5. B. Whelan1
  1. 1The North Western Rheumatology Unit, Our Lady’s Hospital, Manorhamilton, Co Leitrim, Ireland


Background Fatigue is a common and debilitating symptom in inflammatory arthritis. Higher levels of physical activity are associated with better general health status and with better outcomes in inflammatory arthritis [1].

Objectives Our aim was to measure fatigue and physical activity in those with inflammatory arthritis and to examine the relationship between the two.

Methods The study involved the use of two validated self-administered questionnaires 1) the FACIT-F questionnaire[2], to measure fatigue and wellbeing and 2)(the long version of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ)[3] in consecutive, unselected patients with a diagnosis of inflammatory arthritis (rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and juvenile idiopathic arthritis) attending the NWRU. The nonparametric results were analysed with Spearman correlation and Mann-Whitney U techniques.

Results 63 patients were recruited. The mean age of the study cohort was 59.4 years with mean disease duration of 12 years. There was a positive correlation between sitting-time and fatigue score (R =.482, p<.05) and a negative correlation between sitting-time and physical wellbeing score (R=.406, p<.05). There is a weaker negative correlation between fatigue score and physical activity (R=.252, p<.05).

Conclusions As expected, fatigue is related negatively with physical activity. However, the positive relationship between fatigue and sitting-time is stronger and more significant. The utility of asking patients how much time they spend sitting to gauge physical activity and fatigue merits further investigation.

  1. J. Cooney, R. Law, and V. Matschke, “Benefits of exercise in rheumatoid arthritis,” Journal of aging, 2011.

  2. “FACIT-F.” [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 28-Jun-2012].

  3. “International Physical Activity Questionnaire (Long Form).” [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 28-Jun-2012].


Disclosure of Interest None Declared

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