Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients Often Physically Inactive
More than 40 percent of adults with rheumatoid arthritis are physically inactive, according to a new study.
Lead researcher Jungwha Lee, an assistant professor in the department of preventive medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, and colleagues measured the physical activity of 176 people with RA for a week.
The clinical study also looked into the participants’ motivation for physical activity and probed the relationship between a sedentary lifestyle and risk factors such as obesity and pain.
42 percent of the participants were found to be inactive – which was defined as not meeting a minimum of 10 minutes of sustained physical activity during the seven-day monitoring period.
"While there is much evidence of the benefits of physical activity, (rheumatoid arthritis) patients are generally not physically active," Lee said in a statement.
The researchers also found that 53 percent of the subjects had no motivation to perform physical activity, while 49 percent did not believe physical activity to be beneficial to them. These two reasons accounted for 65 percent of the observed inactivity, the authors said.
"Our results suggest that public health initiatives need to address the lack of motivation to exercise and to promote the benefits of physical activity to reduce the prevalence of inactivity in those with rheumatoid arthritis," Lee concluded.
Rheumatoid arthritis – a chronic, systemic disorder characterized by the inflammation of flexible joints – affects 1.3 million people in the United States, HealthDay reported Thursday, citing figures from the American College of Rheumatology.
The study was published online in Arthritis Care & Research.