Objective: Both psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have a significant impact on quality of life, but few reports have compared the two diseases. The current study assessed health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in PsA at diagnosis and after five years compared with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and a matched general population. Methods: Patients with early PsA and early RA included in two Swedish registries with HRQoL data measured by the Medical Outcomes Study Short Form 36 (SF-36) at baseline and at five years follow-up were included. Differences in SF-36 scores compared with the general population were calculated for each patient. Physical function, disease activity, the delay before diagnosis, pain, and general wellbeing were used as explanatory variables. Statistical tests included t-tests and univariate and multivariate linear regression. Results: PsA (n = 166) and RA (n = 133) patients of both sexes had significantly reduced HRQoL at disease onset. After five years, PsA patients still had impairments in several domains of SF-36, whereas RA patients had an almost normalized HRQoL. The time from symptom onset to diagnosis, disease activity, and disability independently contributed to the reduced improvement in PsA. Conclusion: Both early PsA and RA are characterized by severely reduced HRQoL. Despite more severe disease at inclusion, normalization of HRQoL is seen in patients with RA but not PsA. This may be due to delay in the diagnosis of PsA or more powerful interventions in RA. Earlier detection, lifestyle intervention, and more aggressive management strategies may be needed for PsA.
Subject classification (UKÄ)
- Rheumatology and Autoimmunity