Background Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic, progressive and debilitative inflammatory autoimmune disease that exerts negative impact on patients' physical and psychosocial wellbeing.1 This leads to an overall reduction of their quality of life.2 A review of the literature shows that no any study has examined the predictors of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) among a wide range of relevant and interrelated factors.
Objectives To explore the HRQoL and its predictors among patients with RA in Singapore.
Methods This was a cross-sectional, descriptive, correlational study. A convenience sample of 108 outpatients aged 21 and above, diagnosed with RA for more than six months was recruited from a tertiary public hospital in Singapore from October 2013 to February 2014. Outcomes were measured by valid and reliable instruments of the European Quality of Life-5 dimensions, Morisky Medication Adherence Scale-8 items, Medical Outcomes Study Social Support Survey, Impact of Rheumatic Diseases on General health and Lifestyle pain-subscale, Numerical Rating Scale, Health Assessment Questionnaire-Disability Index and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Descriptive statistics, independent t-tests, analysis of variance, Pearson Product-Moment correlation coefficient and multiple linear regression were used to analyse the data using the IBM SPSS version 21.0 for Windows (IBM Corp., Armonk, NY).
Results Participants had moderate HRQoL. Statistically significant difference of HRQoL was found between living status subgroups. HRQoL was positively correlated with medication adherence and overall social support. HRQoL was negatively correlated with pain, functional disability, anxiety and depression. Pain, functional disability and depression were main predictors of HRQoL among patients with RA.
Conclusions This study highlights the impact of pain, functional disability and depression on HRQoL of patients with RA. Healthcare professionals should pay more attention to improving patients' psychological wellbeing, in addition to manage their physical symptoms, such as pain and functional ability. This study implied a need for future interventions to enhance the HRQoL of patients with rheumatoid arthritis by considering the main predictors of HRQoL.
Morris, A., Yelin, E. H., Wong, B., & Katz, P. P. (2008). Patterns of psychosocial risk and long-term outcomes in rheumatoid arthritis. Psychology, Health & Medicine, 13(5), 529-544. doi: 10.1080/13548500801927113.
Sangha, O. (2000). Epidemiology of rheumatic disease. Rheumatology (Oxford), 39(Suppl. 2), 3-12.
Acknowledgements We appreciate the support from all participants.
Disclosure of Interest None declared
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