Objectives: To investigate dissatisfaction with function in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and to see if dissatisfaction can be adequately explained by level of function.
Methods: Fifty patients with RA were assessed for disease activity, psychological status, disability, expectation of future disability, and satisfaction with both global function and individual activities of daily living (ADL).
Results: Fifty percent of patients expressed dissatisfaction with global function, which correlated more strongly with pain (r = 0.474) and psychological status than with function (r = 0.398). Only 10% predicted improvement in global function. Seventy-two percent expressed dissatisfaction with performing at least one ADL.
Conclusions: Patient dissatisfaction with both global function and individual ADL function is high and cannot adequately be explained by disability alone. Correlation with pain and psychological status implies that modifying these variables (perhaps through education programs about pain relief or relaxation) could reduce dissatisfaction.