A goal management intervention for polyarthritis patients: rationale and design of a randomized controlled trial

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
60 Downloads (Pure)


Background A health promotion intervention was developed for inflammatory arthritis patients, based on goal management. Elevated levels of depression and anxiety symptoms, which indicate maladjustment, are found in such patients. Other indicators of adaptation to chronic disease are positive affect, purpose in life and social participation. The new intervention focuses on to improving adaptation by increasing psychological and social well-being and decreasing symptoms of affective disorders. Content includes how patients can cope with activities and life goals that are threatened or have become impossible to attain due to arthritis. The four goal management strategies used are: goal maintenance, goal adjustment, goal disengagement and reengagement. Ability to use various goal management strategies, coping versatility and self-efficacy are hypothesized to mediate the intervention’s effect on primary and secondary outcomes. The primary outcome is depressive symptoms. Secondary outcomes are anxiety symptoms, positive affect, purpose in life, social participation, pain, fatigue and physical functioning. A cost-effectiveness analysis and stakeholders’ analysis are planned. Methods/design The protocol-based psycho-educational program consists of six group-based meetings and homework assignments, led by a trained nurse. Participants are introduced to goal management strategies and learn to use these strategies to cope with threatened personal goals. Four general hospitals participate in a randomized controlled trial with one intervention group and a waiting list control condition. Discussion The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of a goal management intervention. The study has a holistic focus as both the absence of psychological distress and presence of well-being are assessed. In the intervention, applicable goal management competencies are learned that assist people in their choice of behaviors to sustain and enhance their quality of life
Original languageEnglish
Article number239
Pages (from-to)-
Number of pages14
JournalBMC musculoskeletal disorders
Issue number239
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • IR-87480
  • METIS-298112


Dive into the research topics of 'A goal management intervention for polyarthritis patients: rationale and design of a randomized controlled trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this