Objectives Fatigue as such is a cardinal symptom in RA patients. DAS28, SDAI and CDAI are common disease activity measurement tools in Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients. However, none of those adresses fatigue. Patient’s satisfaction with the course of the disease (PATSAT) to be answered on a numerical scale from 1 representing “excellent” up to 5 representing “unsatisfactory” is a simple way to assess the patient’s personal impression of the disease activity. It was of interest to investigate how the above mentioned disease activity assessments are influenced by fatigue.
Methods 189 outclinic RA patients (74% female, mean age 63,6 years, mean disease duration 112 months) were asked to indicate the amount of fatigue during the last week on an 11 point numerical rating scale (from 0 representing “no fatigue at all” to 10 representing “extreme fatigue”). Patients were clinically assessed and DAS28, SDAI and CDAI were calculated. Furthermore patients were asked to indicate PATSAT. To correlate fatigue and the disease activity parameters Spearman’s rho was calculated.
Results Mean DAS28 amounted to 3.09 (95%CI 2.91 - 3.27), mean SDAI 8.32 (95%CI 7.20 - 9.44) and mean CDAI 7.47 (95%CI 6.42 - 8.52) indicating mild disease activity. Mean PATSAT was 2.6 (95%CI 2.42 - 2.74) indicating good to average satisfaction with the disease activity. Mean fatigue reached 4.11 (95%CI 3.73 – 4.49). Between fatigue and DAS28 and CDAI a moderate correlation (rho 0.421 and 0.457 respectively) could be shown. The correlation between fatigue and SDAI was weak (rho 0.332). The best correlation could be shown between fatigue and PATSAT: rho 0.602 (all p’s <0.01).
Conclusions Correlations between fatigue and DAS28 as well as CDAI are moderate; for the SDAI only weak. The best correlation could be shown for fatigue and PATSAT representing the patient’s subjective assessment of disease activity.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared
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