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Multimorbidity Burden in Rheumatoid Arthritis

May 17, 2022 1:27 pm

Crowson and colleagues at the Mayo Clinic have shown that rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients have a higher prevalence of multimorbidity with as many as 44 different morbidities of interest in RA.

This population-based study examined prevalent RA as of January 2015 and sought to identify 44 previously defined morbidities and 78 non-overlapping chronic disease categories. Only those morbidities with a prevalence ≥5% were retained. Multimorbidity was defined as 2 or more morbidities.

A total of 1643 RA patients were matched with 1643 non-RA subjects (72% women; mean age 63.1 years) for study. From these 44 morbidities, multimorbidity was found in 86% of RA and 71% of non-RA subjects (p<0.001). 5+ morbidities was more common in RA patients (55% vs 38% of non-RA; p<0.001).

Patients with RA had significantly higher prevalence interstitial lung disease, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis and osteoporosis. Also significantly higher in RA (than non-RA) was organic sleep disorders, vitamin D deficiency and foot ulcers.

Comorbidity is increased in RA; this is critical to identify as multimorbidity is associated with poorer outcomes and poorer response to therapy.

Disclosures
The author has no conflicts of interest to disclose related to this subject

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