Background Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and Osteoarthritis (OA) is commonly observed in society and chronic diseases that affect hand functions. Both diseases affect daily living activities, such as dressing, nutrition, writing. Quality of life is impared by these diseases. Hand involvement and functions are of the most important factors that determine the impact of the diseases on daily living activities.
Objectives The aims of this study is to compare hand function at rheumatic arthritis (RA) and osteoarthritis (OA), investigate the relationship between hand function, radiographic scores and other disease parameters in rheumatic arthritis and osteoarthritis patients and to evaluate disease activity effect on hand disability in RA patients.
Methods Fifty six patients (47 women, 9 men) with RA and fifty one patients (47 women, 4 men) with hand OA were studied. Disease activity score 28 (DAS28) was calculated to evaluate disease activty in RA patients. Hand functions were assessed with hand grip strength, finger grip strength and Duruöz hand index at all patients. Physical function capacity was asssessed with Health Assessment Quastionnarie (HAQ), Rheumatoid Arthritis Quality of Life (RAQoL), Short Form-36 (SF-36) and Nottingham Health Profile (NHP) at all patients. Patients' mood were assessed with Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HAD) in both groups. Radiographic assessment of hands joints was evaluated according to the modified Larsen score and modified Sharp score in RA patient and Kellegren-Lawrence score in OA patients.
Results There was statistically significant difference between the two groups in terms of hand grip strength. There was no statistically significant difference between the two groups in terms of generic and disease-specific measures in assessing health status and quality of life (excluding NHP fatigue, SF-36 general health, SF-36 vitality and SF-36 emotional role limitations). There was a significant correlation between Duruöz hand index, radiological scoring of joint damage and other clinical parameters in both groups. There was statistically significant difference between disease activity subgroups in RA patients in terms of hand functions.
Conclusions Although RA causes severe deformities on hand joints, also hand osteoarthritis may impair hand functions as rheumatic arthritis. Hand osteoarthritis affects activity of daily living, so hand osteoarthritis may cause disability.
Disclosure of Interest None declared