Use of mainstream nonpharmacologic treatment by patients with arthritis

Arthritis Rheum. 2004 Apr 15;51(2):203-9. doi: 10.1002/art.20244.


Objective: To examine the use of nonpharmacologic treatment by patients with osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

Methods: Patients were recruited from physicians' offices in Ontario, Canada. All participants completed questionnaires that asked about their health status, use of medications and nonpharmacologic treatments, and use of health care resources.

Results: A total of 326 patients with OA and 253 patients with RA completed the survey on the use of nonpharmacologic treatment. Only 73% of patients with OA had been told to use nonpharmacologic modalities, but 98.8% had tried at least 1 type of treatment. About 97% of those with RA had been told to use and had tried at least 1 type of treatment. Most patients continued to use a treatment once they had tried it.

Conclusion: The use of nonpharmacologic modalities is common among patients with arthritis. It is important that clinicians address with their patients the appropriate use of and barriers to continuing these treatments.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / therapy*
  • Braces / statistics & numerical data
  • Exercise Therapy / statistics & numerical data
  • Family Practice / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Health Care Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteoarthritis / therapy*
  • Patient Dropouts / statistics & numerical data
  • Rheumatology / statistics & numerical data