International Journal of Rheumatology / 2018 / Article / Tab 1

Research Article

Work Ability and Employment in Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Cross-Sectional Study on the Role of Muscle Strength and Lower Extremity Function

Table 1

Characteristics of the study population and univariate comparison of subjects with and without gainful employment.

Total population(n=100)Gainfully employed subjects(n=59)Non-gainfully employed subject (n=41)p-value
VariableNMean (SD)/Median [IQR]NMean (SD)/Median [IQR]NMean(SD)/Median[IQR]

Female gender666638642868.30.830
Age – years53.0 49.0 58.0 <0.001
In a relationship7171447527660.340
Education level0.013
 Compulsory1818581334
 Secondary71714678 2561
 Higher1111 814 37
Disease duration – months78.00 60.0 78.0 (36.5-192)0.260
Disease activity – CDAI8.0 (8.2)0.8 (7.9)8.4 (8.8)0.644
Pain - VAS3.5 (2.05)3.3 (1.9)4.1 (2.2)0.056
Inflammatory marker
 CRP - mg/dl3.2 2.6 3.9 0.035
 IL-6 - pg/ml3.9 3.7 4.1 0.443
 TNF-alpha - µg/ml1.6 1.3 1.9 0.273
Rheumatoid arthritis medication
 sDMARDs8080467834830.617
 bDMARDs4444 3050.8 1434.10.107
 Corticosteroids1717 1016.9 7171.000
 NSAIDs/Pain killers1515915.3614.61.000
Comedication (non-RA)55552542.43073.20.001
Number of comedication1 0 2 0.002
Comorbidities
 Presence of comorbidity6565325433810.007
 Number of comorbidities1 1 2.0 0.005
Functional Disability (HAQ - DI)0.5 0.4 0.8 0.009
 HAQ-DI ≤ 1, no disability707050270.067
 HAQ-DI >1, disability2828912
Job demands
 Predominantly physical1017
 Predominantly mental2136
 Mixed physical and mental 2847
Workability index single item (WAS)7.00 8.0 4 <0.001
Workability index (WAI)37.3
Muscle strength - kg
 Hand grip strength29.4 (14.4)32.1(14.9)25.5 (12.9)0.024
 Knee extensor strength36.4 (16.8)41.5(17.1)29.2 (13.6)<0.001
Lower extremity function - (SPPB) total10.8 (1.9)11.3 (1.5)10.1 (2.2)0.003
 Chair stands3.2 (1.2)3.6 (0.9)2.7 (1.3)0.010
 Balance test 3.7 (0.7)3.8 (0.6)3.6 (0.9)0.262
 Walking test 3.9 (0.5)3.9 (0.3)3.8 (0.7)0.030

SD=standard deviation, IQR=interquartile range, CDAI=clinical disease activity index, VAS=visual analogue scale, CRP=C-reactive protein, IL-6=interleukin-6, TNF-alpha=tumor necrosis factor-alpha, s/b DMARD=synthetic/biological disease-modifying antirheumatic drug, WAI=workability index, WAS=single item workability index, SPPB=short physical performance battery, and HAQ-DI=health assessment questionnaire-disability index.
Assessed for gainfully employed patients only.

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