Acta Reumatológica Portuguesa - Online First: 2020-08-25
Early Retirement Attributed to Rheumatoid Arthritis and Its Predictors
ResumoObjective: To evaluate the rate of early retirement due to rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in Portugal.
Methods: Prospective cohort study involving 11 Portuguese centers, including patients with a clinical diagnosis of RA, based on Reuma.pt registry, enrolled between 2008 and 2019.
Results: 3231 patients were included (81.5% female, aged 60.8 ± 13.0 years, mean disease duration 18.0 ± 10.3 years). Until the present time, 37.6% of these patients retired, 59.6% due to RA. Early retirement due to RA translated into losing 7 years of active work when compared to patients retired to other causes. Compared to professionally active patients, retired patients due to RA were diagnosed later in the disease process (p=0.003), had longer disease duration (p < 0.001), were more frequently positive for rheumatoid factor (p=0.043), had more frequently erosive disease (p < 0.001), had a blue-collar occupation (p < 0.001) and had a lower educational level (p < 0.001). Independent predictors for early retirement due to RA were: delayed diagnosis (OR: 2.23; 95% CI 1.18-4.21/year, p=0.013), erosive disease (OR: 2.21 95% CI 1.54-3.16, p < 0.001), need for biologic therapy (OR: 1.32; 95%CI 1.01-1.73, p=0.045) and lower educational level (OR: 0.83; 95%CI 0.79-0.86/year, p < 0.001).
Conclusion: RA is, itself, the leading cause of early retirement in RA patients, accounting for the loss of an average of 7 years of active work. Delayed diagnosis, erosive disease and lower educational level are the main predictors of early retirement associated with RA in this population.