Fri. Jan 21st, 2022

November 29, 2021

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Information: The researchers report no relevant financial information.


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A median of only 16.2% of adults with arthritis participated in a self-management class in 2019, while 69.3% received same-year physical activity counseling from their provider, according to CDC researchers.

Although participation in self-management classes was low among all adults with arthritis, the researchers who published their results in Weekly report on morbidity and mortality, further noted that men, those with a high school education or less, and those in small towns or rural areas exhibited particularly low participation and physical activity counseling from providers.

A median of only 16.2% of adults with arthritis participated in a self-management class in 2019, while 69.3% received same-year physical activity counseling from their provider, according to CDC researchers. Data derived from Duca LM, et al. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2021; doi: 10.15585 / mmwr.mm7042a2.

“Arthritis is a common and disabling chronic condition among American adults,” Lindsey M. Duca, PhD, from the CDC Epidemic Intelligence Service and the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, told Healio Rheumatology. “Self-management training and physical activity can reduce arthritis pain and improve the overall health status and quality of life of adults with arthritis.”

She added: “Healthcare providers play an important role in promoting classroom self-management and physical activity by advising arthritis patients on their benefits and referring them to evidence-based programs.”

Lindsey M. Duca

To examine self-reported participation in self-management classes and the reception of physical activity counseling among adults with arthritis, Duca and colleagues analyzed data from the 2019 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). According to the researchers, BRFSS is an annual, cross-cutting, state-based telephone survey of non-institutionalized American adults. Participants with arthritis were identified through a questionnaire that asked, “Have you ever been told by a doctor or other health care professional that you have arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, arthritis, lupus, or fibromyalgia?”

A total of 135,862 adults reported having arthritis in the study. The researchers defined self-management class participation through a question in the study that asked, “Have you ever taken an education course or class to learn how to deal with problems related to your arthritis or joint symptoms?” Meanwhile, it turned out that participants had received physical activity counseling if they answered in the affirmative: “Has a doctor or other health professional ever suggested physical activity or exercise to help your arthritis or joint symptoms?”

According to the researchers, among adults with arthritis in 49 states – New Jersey was excluded from the 2019 BRFSS dataset for public use for not having sufficient data – and Washington, DC, an age-standardized median of 16.2% reported ever participating in a self-management class. Meanwhile, 69.3% reported that they have ever been advised by a provider to maintain physical activity.

The prevalence of both outcomes varied by state – from 9.8% in Washington, DC to 24.9% in Hawaii – and sociodemographic characteristics. For example, the age-adjusted prevalence of self-management hours among men was 15.4% compared to 17% among women.

Groups with an attendance frequency of less than 15% included those with a high school education or less (12.8%), the employed (14.8%), the unemployed (13.4%), students and homemakers (12.8%) , those living in small towns (14.5%) or rural areas (14.7%), those who were inactive within the last 30 days (12.9%), and those with no or mild joint pain (13 , 6%).

“Results from this report show that less than two out of 10 adults with arthritis reported that they had ever attended a self-management class, and almost 7 out of 10 reported that they had received counseling from the health nurse to encourage physical activity. said Duca. “People with arthritis who received a recommendation from a health nurse to attend a self-management course were nine times more likely to attend a class than those who did not receive a recommendation.

“Healthcare providers can reduce arthritis patients’ pain and improve their health status and quality of life by talking to patients about the benefits of physical activity and self-management training and by supporting referrals to evidence-based programs,” she added. “Healthcare providers can talk to their arthritis patients about the benefits of physical activity and self-management training and support referrals to evidence-based arthritis-appropriate programs.”

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