Objectives: The purpose of this study was to investigate the anxiety and depression levels in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), which is a chronic disease progressing with intermittent arthralgia. Methods: This prospective study consisted of 50 RA patients followed clinically in the rheumatology clinic and 50 patients with arthralgia excluding the diagnosis of RA forming a control group. The mean age of the patient group was 50.70±12.48 years, and 78% of the sample were women. The mean age of the control group was 38.46±10.88 years, and 54% of the sample were women. In the RA patient population, the mean duration of disease was 145.56±105.97 months. Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II), Spielberger’s State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ), and Disease Activity Score for Rheumatoid Arthritis (DAS28) scores were recorded and analyzed. The patient and control groups were subdivided according to age, sex, and educational level. The patient group included a larger number of people with less formal education then the control group. Results: The DAS28 score was low or absent (remission) in 78% of the patients and HAQ-DI score of the patients was significantly higher than in the control group (p=0.001; p<0.01). STAI results indicated that both groups had primarily trait anxiety (STAI-T). Both groups also had minimal depression, according to BDI-II scores. Correlations between scores were evaluated, and a positive relationship between the BDI–II and HAQ-DI scores of the patients and the STAI-T and HAQ-DI of the control group (p<0.001) was observed. There was no other statistically significant relationship between scores. Conclusion: Anxiety and depression levels was not significantly associated with disease activity in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Due to fact that, 78 of of the patients was in remission state, the patients had minimal depression state. Remission state of the disease did not cause anxiety and depression. Further researchs are needed to enlight the association between rheumatoid arhtritis disease activity and anxiety and depression levels.
Corresponding Author: Takir M.