Social and economic impacts of four musculoskeletal conditions. A study using national community-based data

Arthritis Rheum. 1983 Jul;26(7):901-7. doi: 10.1002/art.1780260712.


The present study uses data from a national, community-based survey to compare the social impact of and medical care use due to 4 musculoskeletal conditions: rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, lower back pain, and tendinitis. The study also compares the impacts experienced by persons with these conditions with those experienced by a sample of persons having a broader range of musculoskeletal conditions, and by an age-adjusted sample representing the entire U.S. population. Rheumatoid arthritis leads to the most frequent use of physician services; lower back pain results in the most hospitalizations and surgery. Rheumatoid arthritis also causes the most restriction in activity. We found that as a broad group, persons with musculoskeletal disease experience about the same amount of restriction in activity and use about the same amount of medical care as U.S. citizens as a whole. This study demonstrates that health planning on the basis of specific musculoskeletal conditions is necessary to serve the disparate needs of persons with particular, discrete conditions.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aging
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / economics
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / psychology
  • Back Pain / economics
  • Back Pain / psychology
  • Bone Diseases / economics*
  • Bone Diseases / psychology
  • Female
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscular Diseases / economics*
  • Muscular Diseases / psychology
  • Osteoarthritis / economics
  • Osteoarthritis / psychology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Tendinopathy / economics
  • Tendinopathy / psychology
  • Time Factors