Performance of a generic health-related quality of life measure in a clinic population with rheumatic disease

Authors


Abstract

Objective

To assess the performance of a generic health-related quality of life (HRQOL) measure in a rheumatology clinic population.

Methods

Participants (n = 619) with fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, or osteoarthritis receiving care from rheumatologists completed mailed questionnaires that included the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) HRQOL measure and condition-specific measures assessing disability, pain, fatigue, and helplessness. The BRFSS assesses global health and number of days in the past 30 of poor physical or mental health or activity limitation. The overall sample was described, followed by comparison of adjusted scores on all HRQOL measures by diagnosis.

Results

Participants reported mild difficulty with activities of daily living, marked pain and fatigue, and moderate helplessness. Participants reported a mean of 8 or more days out of 30 of poor physical and mental health and activity limitations; more than 40% reported poor or fair health. Participants with fibromyalgia reported more ill health on condition-specific measures and the BRFSS HRQOL measures than did participants with osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.

Conclusion

The BRFSS HRQOL measure is a brief, easily administered, generic health indicator that shows differences among rheumatic disease diagnoses.

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