To examine arthritis impact among US adults with self-reported doctor-diagnosed arthritis using the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) framework (including the impairments, activity limitations, environmental, and personal factors domains and social participation restriction [SPR] as the outcome) overall and among those with and without SPR, and to identify the correlates of SPR.


Cross-sectional 2009 National Health Interview Survey data were analyzed to examine the distribution of the ICF domain components. Unadjusted and multivariable-adjusted prevalence ratios (PRs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were estimated to identify the correlates of SPR. Analyses using SAS, version 9.2 survey procedures accounted for the complex sample design.


SPR prevalence was 11% of adults with arthritis (5.7 million). After initial multivariable adjustment by ICF domain, serious psychological distress (impairments domain; PR 2.5 [95% CI 2.0–3.2]), ≥5 medical office visits (environmental domain; PR 3.4 [95% CI 2.5–4.4]), and physical inactivity (personal domain; PR 4.8 [95% CI 3.6–6.4]) were most strongly associated with SPR. A combined measure (key limitations [walking, standing, or carrying]; PR 31.2 [95% CI 22.3–43.5]) represented the activity limitations domain. After final multivariable adjustment incorporating all ICF domains simultaneously, the strongest associations with SPR were key limitations (PR 24.3 [95% CI 16.8–35.1]), ≥9 hours of sleep (PR 1.6 [95% CI 1.3–2.0]), and income-to-poverty ratio <2.00 and severe joint pain (PR 1.4 [95% CI 1.2–1.6] for both).


SPR affects 1 of 9 adults with arthritis. This study is the first to use the ICF framework in a population-based sample to identify specific functional activities, pain, sleep, and other areas as priorities for intervention to reduce negative arthritis impacts on disability, including SPR. Increased use of existing clinical and public health interventions is warranted.