Family work demands, employment demands and depressive symptoms in women with rheumatoid arthritis

Women Health. 1995;22(3):25-45. doi: 10.1300/J013v22n03_03.


The effects of psychological demands, work autonomy and social support on psychological well-being are evaluated in a sample of employed women with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Two hundred sixty-seven employed women with a diagnosis of RA were recruited from a national random sample of private rheumatology practices. Women were interviewed by telephone and data were obtained on demographic variables, health status, demands in paid and family work, autonomy in paid and family work, social support and depressive symptoms. Women reported relatively high levels of psychological demands in both paid and family work, with time constraints being the most frequent problem. Women also had relatively high levels of autonomy in family work. Hierarchical regression analysis showed that family demands appeared to be more important than paid work demands in psychological well-being. High autonomy in family work seemed to mediate the effects of family demands. Having higher social support reduced the effects of work demands on depressive symptoms in employed women with RA.

MeSH terms

  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / complications
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / psychology*
  • Chronic Disease / psychology
  • Depression / complications*
  • Educational Status
  • Female
  • Freedom
  • Health Status
  • Household Work*
  • Humans
  • Least-Squares Analysis
  • Middle Aged
  • Social Support
  • Stress, Psychological*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Women's Health*
  • Women, Working*
  • Workload*