Objective: To examine the degree of anxiety and depression and to assess well being and general symptoms in patients with primary Sjögren's syndrome (SS).
Methods: A standardized questionnaire, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, was used to examine the degree of anxiety and depression in patients with primary SS (n = 62) and in age matched healthy female controls. The Gothenburg quality of life instrument (GQOL) was used to assess well being and general symptoms. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA; n = 38) were used as patient controls.
Results: The patients with primary SS had significantly higher scoring rate for "possible" clinical anxiety (48%) and for "possible" clinical depression (32%) compared with reference groups (p<0.05). The physical and mental well being of the patients with primary SS were significantly reduced compared with controls. Furthermore, patients with primary SS complained more commonly of low mood, irritability, headache, gastrointestinal symptoms, and impaired concentration and memory than the patients with RA.
Conclusion: The results indicate that patients with primary SS often have psychiatric symptoms and worse well being, which may affect their quality of life.