Arthritis & Rheumatism, Volume 60,
October 2009 Abstract Supplement

The 2009 ACR/ARHP Annual Scientific Meeting
Philadelphia October 16-21, 2009.

Co-Morbidity Status of People with Arthritis Sways Their Self-Management Education Program Preference

Murphy1,  Louise, Brady1,  Teresa J., Theis1,  Kristina A., Bolen1,  Julie, White2,  Patience

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Atlanta, GA,
The George Washington University, Washington, DC


To characterize, among people with arthritis, who is most likely to be interested in attending self management education programs (SME), and to describe how presence of co-morbidities influences preferred type of SME among people with arthritis.


We analyzed data from a national U.S. phone survey of white and black adults (n=1002), aged 40–70 years old, who have doctor diagnosed arthritis and "some" or "many" limitations due to arthritis. Participants in this survey were those who responded 'yes' to "Have you EVER been told by a doctor or other health professional that you have some form of arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, lupus, or fibromyalgia?" Both a generic chronic disease and an arthritis-specific SMP were described to participants, who were queried on their preference and receptivity ("very/somewhat likely" or "not very/not at all likely") to participation in each. We estimated the prevalence of receptivity and preference for each SMP type and examined correlates (e.g., demographics, symptoms, number of comorbidities) in multivariable adjusted logistic regression models with odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI). Comorbidities examined were cancer, cardiovascular disease, depression, diabetes and high blood pressure.


Nearly 60% of respondents reported being very/somewhat likely to participate in either type of SME. Blacks, women, and those reporting severe pain in the past week, and some physical limitations had the greatest interest in SMEs. The multivariable adjusted regression models showed that respondents who were black (OR=1.9; 95% CI=1.2 – 2.9), retired (OR=1.7; 95% CI= 1.2 – 2.6), or had comorbidities preferred the generic SMP (1 comorbidity: OR=1.7 [95% CI=1.0 – 2.9]; 2 comorbidities: OR=3.3 [95% CI=2.0 – 5.7], and at least 3 comorbidities: 6.7 [95% CI=3.8–11.8]), while respondents who experienced moderate or high levels of pain on a typical day were more likely to prefer the arthritis specific SMP (OR=0.3; 95% CI=0.1 – 0.9).


Among people with arthritis, blacks, women, and those with severe pain in the past week and some physical limitations are most likely to be interested in participating in any type of SMP. People with arthritis and comorbid conditions preferred generic to arthritis-specific SMPs, and this preference for a generic SMP was highest among those with multiple comorbidities. Recognizing the high prevalence of comorbidities among people with arthritis, expanding the availability of generic SMPs, particularly among blacks and women, should improve chronic disease self-management skills and improve quality-of-life for people with arthritis.

To cite this abstract, please use the following information:
Murphy, Louise, Brady, Teresa J., Theis, Kristina A., Bolen, Julie, White, Patience; Co-Morbidity Status of People with Arthritis Sways Their Self-Management Education Program Preference [abstract]. Arthritis Rheum 2009;60 Suppl 10 :2030
DOI: 10.1002/art.27102

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