METHODS: Nine thousands eight hundred seventy-four patients from 34 countries, 16 with high GDP (>24.000 US dollars [USD] per capita) and 18 low-GDP countries (<24.000 USD) participated in the Quantitative Standard monitoring of Patients with RA (QUEST-RA) study. The prevalence of 31 comorbid conditions, fatigue (0-10 cm visual analogue scale [VAS] [10=worst]), disease activity in 28 joints (DAS28), and physical disability (Health Assessment Questionnaire score [HAQ]) were assessed. Univariate and multivariate linear regression analyses were performed to assess the association between fatigue and comorbidities, disease activity, disability and GDP.
RESULTS: Overall, patients reported a median of 2 comorbid conditions of which hypertension (31.5%), osteoporosis (17.6%), osteoarthritis (15.5%) and hyperlipidaemia (14.2%) were the most prevalent. The majority of comorbidities were more common in high-GDP countries. The median fatigue score was 4.4 (4.8 in low-GDP countries and 3.8 in high-GDP countries, p<0.001). In low-GDP countries 25.4% of the patients had a high level of fatigue (>6.6) compared with 23.0% in high-GDP countries (p<0.001). In univariate analysis, fatigue increased with increasing number of comorbidities, disease activity and disability in both high- and low-GDP countries. In multivariate analysis of all countries, these 3 variables explained 29.4% of the variability, whereas GDP was not significant.
CONCLUSIONS: Fatigue is a widespread problem associated with high comorbidity burden, disease activity and disability regardless of GDP.
|Journal||Clinical and experimental rheumatology|
|Publication status||Published - 2014|