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Original Investigation
May 1982

Physical and Psychosocial Function in Rheumatoid Arthritis: Clinical Use of a Self-administered Health Status Instrument

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, University of Washington (Drs Deyo, Inui, and Overman), and Seattle Veterans Administration Medical Center (Drs Deyo and Inui and Ms Leininger).

Arch Intern Med. 1982;142(5):879-882. doi:10.1001/archinte.1982.00340180037008

The treatment of chronic disease is often directed at preservation of function, but most functional measures are crude, and rarely include indicators of psychosocial status. The Sickness Impact Profile (SIP) is a newer "health status" measure designed to comprehensively assess such outcomes. The functional and psychosocial impacts of rheumatoid arthritis and their relation to disease duration were measured by having 79 patients self-administer the SIP. Disease impacts were pervasive, including effects on leisure, social, and sexual activities, as well as physical function. While physical and psychosocial disease impacts were positively correlated, the association diminished with longer duration of disease. The self-administered SIP appears to be practical and useful in clinical settings. Specific results may help to target patient education, increase physician awareness of the distress patients experience, suggest the need for social and rehabilitative services, and help monitor responses to therapy.