Sick Leave Before and After Diagnosis of Rheumatoid Arthritis - A Report from the Swedish TIRA Project

Mathilda Bjork, Ingrid Thyberg, Klas Rikner, Istvan Balogh, Bjorn Gerdle

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33 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

Objective. Our study describes sick leave during 3 years before and 3 years after diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in relation to referents and identifies predictors for sick leave during the third year after diagnosis of RA. Methods. One hundred twenty patients (76% women) from the Swedish early RA study TIRA were included. Disease activity and disability were registered regularly during 3 years in TIRA. Referents were matched for sex, age, and home town. Sick leave data were obtained for patients 3 years before and 3 years after diagnosis and for the referents for the corresponding 6 years. Results. No differences were seen between patients and referents regarding sick leave during the first 2 years, whereas sick leave increased in patients 6 months before diagnosis, from 30% to 53%. During the 3 years after diagnosis, sick leave among patients was rather stable, varying between 50% and 60%, even though disability pension increased and sickness benefit decreased. Sick leave before diagnosis, disability I year after diagnosis, and type of work were identified as predictors for sick leave during the third year after diagnosis. Conclusion. Not surprisingly, sick leave in patients increased the year before diagnosis. Although disease activity and disability diminished after diagnosis, the patients' sick leave remained essentially unchanged. Sick leave 3 years after diagnosis was foremost predicted by earlier sick leave, disability, and type of work. (First Release May 1 2009; J Rheumatol 2009:36:1170-9; doi:10.3899/jrheum.080523)
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1170-1179
JournalJournal of Rheumatology
Volume36
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Rheumatology and Autoimmunity

Keywords

  • SICK LEAVE
  • RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS
  • CASE-CONTROL STUDY
  • RISK FACTORS

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