Perceived control: a comparison of women with fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, and systemic lupus erythematosus using a Swedish version of the Rheumatology Attitudes Index

Scand J Rheumatol. 1996;25(5):300-6. doi: 10.3109/03009749609104062.


This study compared the attitudes of women with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), or fibromyalgia (FM) regarding their perceptions of control and ability to cope with their disease. We also report the validation of a Swedish version of the Rheumatology Attitudes Index (RAI). One hundred thirty-nine women participated in the study by completing the RAI two or three times along with several other self-report and disease severity measures. The Swedish version RAI was found to have acceptable reliability, evidence of validity, sensitivity to change, and two distinct factors of internality and helplessness. In general, patients with RA or SLE perceived higher control over their symptoms than those with FM. FM patients who participated in a self-management experimental program significantly changed their scores on the RAI in a positive direction.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / psychology*
  • Attitude*
  • Female
  • Fibromyalgia / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Internal-External Control
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / psychology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain Measurement
  • Quality of Life
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*