European Journal of Rheumatology
Original Article

What do patients with rheumatoid arthritis know about their own biomedical data related to cardiovascular disease risks?


Department of Rheumatology, Royal Free NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK


Midwifery and Palliative Care, King’s College London Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, London, UK


KPC Research and Consultancy Ltd., London, UK


Department of Rheumatology, Hillingdon NHS Foundation Trust, Uxbridge, UK

Eur J Rheumatol 2021; 8: 202-206
DOI: 10.5152/eurjrheum.2021.20021
Read: 646 Downloads: 319 Published: 01 October 2021

Objective: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic condition characterized by articular and non-articular features. Patients with RA have an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. This study aimed to ascertain what patients with RA know about their numbers (biomedical data, including blood pressure, cholesterol, disease activity score-28 joints [DAS28], and body mass index [BMI]) and to understand the barriers to patients knowing these health indicators and how their knowledge can be improved.

Methods: A total of 50 consecutive patients from a clinic were approached to complete an anonymous survey in a nurse-led clinic. The questionnaire included 10 questions that assessed the demographic data, knowledge of biomedical data, importance of these data, and how their awareness could be increased.

Results: A total of 40 patients responded to the questionnaire; the estimated mean age was 58.1±13.4 (mean±standard deviation) years. Most respondents were females (87%). The highest disease category duration was 2-5 years (40% patients). Moreover, 30% of respondents were aware of the “know your numbers” concept; 90% did not know their BMI, and 75% did not know about their DAS28 score. Furthermore, 40% reported that they were not informed about their biomedical data; 95% of patients revealed that they would like to know their numbers; 27.5% suggested that a regularly updated and explained written record would be appropriate, and 35% proposed that a multidisciplinary input would be useful in regularly informing them of the numbers.

Conclusion: This study has shown that although patients are not very familiar with all of their biomedical data, they are interested in knowing them. Knowing their biomedical data may encourage them to be more concerned about their health and even lead to improved RA self-management and health outcomes.

Cite this article as: Ngcozana T, Corbett K, Bhatia A. What do patients with rheumatoid arthritis know about their own biomedical data related to cardiovascular disease risks? Eur J Rheumatol 2021;8(4):202-206.

EISSN 2148-4279