19th century spondyloarthropathy independent of socioeconomic status: lack of skeletal collection bias

J Rheumatol. 1993 Feb;20(2):314-9.


The representativeness of skeletal populations for characterization of the nature and frequency of disease could be questioned, as the bias of acquisition is often unclear. Examination of 2 proximate early 19th century cemetery populations, discordant for socioeconomic status, revealed indistinguishable character and frequency of spondyloarthropathy. Joint involvement, number and symmetry of joint erosions and fusion and skeletal distribution were indistinguishable in the 2 populations. It would appear that socioeconomic status does not bias skeletal populations, at least with respect to diseases for which no effective treatment was available.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • Data Collection
  • Female
  • Great Lakes Region / epidemiology
  • History, 19th Century
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Hyperostosis, Diffuse Idiopathic Skeletal / economics
  • Hyperostosis, Diffuse Idiopathic Skeletal / epidemiology
  • Hyperostosis, Diffuse Idiopathic Skeletal / history*
  • Male
  • Mortuary Practice / history
  • Selection Bias
  • Social Class*
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / economics
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / epidemiology
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / history*