Arthritis & Rheumatism, Volume 62,
November 2010 Abstract Supplement

Abstracts of the American College of
Rheumatology/Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals
Annual Scientific Meeting
Atlanta, Georgia November 6-11, 2010.

Does Physical Activity Dose Predict Physical and Mental Health-Related Quality of Life in People with Arthritis?

Jones,  Dina L., Zhang,  Ruoxin, Himes,  Melissa, Eicher,  Jennifer L.


Little is known about the relationship between health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and physical activity (PA) dose in people with arthritis (PWA). A prior survey indicated that PWA who met national PA recommendations had fewer unhealthy days per month due to physical or mental health. To further explore this relationship, we analyzed baseline data in PWA in an exercise intervention to determine if HRQOL improved over increasing increments of PA dose.


Sedentary adults with self-reported physician-diagnosed arthritis were enrolled in a 12-week, community-based, exercise intervention using the EnhanceFitness® program. Baseline data were collected on demographics, comorbidities, arthritis symptoms, performance-based physical function (Senior Fitness Test), body mass index (BMI), self-efficacy, outcome expectations, self-reported PA, and HRQOL. The CHAMPS Activities Questionnaire for Older Adults assessed the typical weekly frequency and duration of participation in 41 leisure/daily activities. Dose was the number of hours spent per week in moderate- or vigorous-intensity leisure activity: 1) inactive (0 mins), 2) insufficiently active (1–149 mins), and 3) meeting recommendations (>= 150 mins). The SF-12 Physical Component Summary (PCS) and Mental Component Summary (MCS) scores were used to measure HRQOL. Two stepwise multiple linear regression procedures, with dose forced into each model, were performed to determine if dose predicted the PCS or MCS after adjusting for other covariates.


The study included 173 participants (83% female) with a mean age of 69 ± 10.4 years. Univariate predictors of the PCS included dose (p = 0.01) and comorbidities (r = -.36), pain (r = -.38), stiffness (r = -.47), fatigue (r = -.33), BMI (r = -.36), number of chair stands in 30 secs (r =.43), number of seconds to walk 8 feet (r = -.37), number of steps marched in 2 mins (r =.36), self-efficacy (r =.38), outcome expectations (r =.35), and arthritis limitations (all p < 0.001). The best set of predictors in the PCS model were dose (b= 2.7–2.9, p = 0.1), stiffness (b= -.68, p = 0.03), chair stands (b=.70, p = 0.003), BMI (b= -.24, p = 0.01); pain (b= -.83, p = 0.02), and number of steps (b=.08, p = 0.04) (R2=.47). Univariate predictors of the MCS included dose (p = 0.04); employment (p = 0.001); outcome expectations (r =.19, p = 0.02); and age (r =.36), pain (r = -.29), stiffness (r = -.23), fatigue (r = -.42), comorbidities (r = -.42), and self-efficacy (r =.34) (all p < 0.001). The best set of predictors in the MCS model were dose (b= 2.3–2.6, p = 0.25), comorbidities (b= -.26, p = 0.01), age (b=.38, p < 0.001), and fatigue (b=-1.37, p < 0.001) (R2=.36).


Although PA dose predicted mental and physical HRQOL when considered alone, the relationship did not remain after adjusting for other factors. After controlling for dose, physical HRQOL was better in PWA with less pain and stiffness, a lower BMI, and better performance on physical function tests. Mental HRQOL was better in PWA with fewer comorbid conditions, lower fatigue, and older age, after adjusting for dose. Future research could further investigate this relationship longitudinally by examining changes in dose and HRQOL over time.

To cite this abstract, please use the following information:
Jones, Dina L., Zhang, Ruoxin, Himes, Melissa, Eicher, Jennifer L.; Does Physical Activity Dose Predict Physical and Mental Health-Related Quality of Life in People with Arthritis? [abstract]. Arthritis Rheum 2010;62 Suppl 10 :688
DOI: 10.1002/art.28456

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