Life events and disability in rheumatoid arthritis: A European cohort

F Leymarie, D Jolly, R. Sanderman, S Briancon, A.-C Marchant, F Cuillemin, J.-P Eschard, Th.P.B.M. Suurmeijer, P Pointrinal

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The objective was to study the relationship between life events (LE) and the clinical status of patients suffering from recently diagnosed rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in a 2 yr follow-up. As part of a multicentre European cohort study, 370 French and Dutch patients were questioned three times at I yr intervals about LE which had occurred in the previous year. Three criteria were used to quantify the degree of disease activity (Ritchie's index), the level of functional disability [Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ)] and perceived health [Overall Evaluation of Health (OEH)]. Total LE and desirable LE showed a weak negative correlation with the HAQ scores. On the other hand, death-related LE did not seem to modify patient status. The higher the number of health-associated LE, the greater the deterioration in HAQ and OEH scores. The results indicate that LE do not affect the course of early RA in a spectacular manner.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1106-1112
Number of pages7
JournalBritish Journal of Rheumatology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct-1997


  • life events
  • disability
  • rheumatoid arthritis

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