Earlier diagnosis and advances in treatment mean that people with arthritis are likely to have a better quality of life than they did a generation ago. Yet research shows that having arthritis still impacts one’s health-related quality of life in negative ways. In a study published in 2011 in Arthritis Care & Research, researchers found that measures of physical and mental health were consistently two to three times worse in people with arthritis than in those without arthritis.
For the study, researchers reviewed data collected from more than a million adults. The data stem from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, an ongoing nationwide telephone health survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Study participants did not specify what type of arthritis they had; they were asked whether a doctor or other health professional had ever told them they had some form of arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis, gout and lupus.
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