Background Fatigue is a common and disturbing symptom in patients with Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) (1,2). Measuring fatigue, understanding its contributory factors, and treating it lead to better patient outcome (3).
Objectives The aim of this study is to investigate the relation between fatigue and pain, functional status, disease activity in patients with RA and to determine the effect of fatigue on the quality of life of patients with RA.
Methods A total of 141 patients (103 female, 38 male) who were diagnosed RA according to ACR (American College of Rheumatology) diagnostic criteria were included in the study. Fatigue Symptom Inventory (FSI) was used for evaluation of fatigue. While the disease activity was determined using the Disease Activity Score-28 (DAS28), the Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ) was used to determine the functional status. The pain intensity was determined using 10 cm Visual Analogue Scale-Pain (VAS-pain).
Results The mean age of the patients is 54.67±10.70 years and the mean duration of illness is 14.31±10.89 years. When the relationship between fatigue and other factors was examined, a statistically significant relationship was found between FSI fatigue severity scores (maximum, minimum, mean, current), FSI duration scores (number of days felt tired, amount of time felt tired), FSI interference score and HAQ, number of swollen joints, number of tender joints, VAS rest and VAS motion values (p<0.05). There was a statistically significant lower correlation between FSI fatigue severity scores (at least, mean) and DAS28 (r: 0.216, r: 0.181, respectively). There was no significant relationship between FSI scores and age, duration of illness, steroid use
Conclusions Fatigue affects patients independently of disease duration in patients with RA. Fatigue is associated with disease activity, functional status, and pain. For this reason, fatigue in RA patients should be considered as an important symptom that should not be overlooked and should be struggled.
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Disclosure of Interest None declared