Table 3

Frequency of reasons for seeking medical help in all arthralgia patients and subsequently for short versus prolonged patient delay and patients with and without arthritis

Patient delayArthritis at examination
All arthralgia patients<4 weeks>4 weeksPresentAbsent
Reasons for seeking medical help; Because…
 The symptoms suddenly occurred27.947.518.0*34.222.9*
 The symptoms were getting worse65.760.369.4*64.766.5
 More symptoms occurred37.429.339.2*35.738.8
 I worried about what could be wrong42.043.843.343.840.6
 I worried I might have had a joint inflammation36.136.433.934.937.1
 I worried I might have had a joint inflammation and I heard/read that you have to act quickly14.414.013.914.014.7
 Due to my symptoms, I was unable to do things35.140.928.6*37.533.2
 I wanted to ask for a painkiller15.816.912.216.215.6
 My family/friends thought I should go22.222.321.626.119.1*
Reasons for postponing seeking medical help; Because…
 I was unable to go sooner2.
 I wanted to wait and see43.039.747.341.244.4
 The doctor could not see me sooner1.
 It seemed like it was getting better7.54.111.4*7.07.9
 I thought it would go away by itself39.432.648.2*37.940.6
 I thought nothing could be done about it6.41.77.3*5.57.1
 I thought I wouldn't be taken seriously3.40.83.7*3.33.5
 It didn't seem serious12.47.016.3*11.413.2
 I was afraid it might have been serious2.
 I asked somebody else to look at it first3.
  • Data are expressed as %.

  • *p Value < 0.05.