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Aerobic capacity over 16 years in patients with rheumatoid arthritis: relationship to disease activity and risk factors for cardiovascular disease
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Rheumatology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Rheumatology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Rheumatology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Rheumatology.
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2017 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 12, no 12, article id e0190211Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this study was to analyse the change in aerobic capacity from disease onset of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) over 16.2 years, and its associations with disease activity and cardiovascular risk factors. Twenty-five patients (20 f/5 m), diagnosed with RA 1995-2002 were tested at disease onset and after mean 16.2 years. Parameters measured were: sub-maximal ergometer test for aerobic capacity, functional ability, self-efficacy, ESR, CRP and DAS28. At follow-up, cardiovascular risk factors were assessed as blood lipids, glucose concentrations, waist circumference, body mass index (BMI), body composition, pulse wave analysis and carotid intima-media thickness. Aerobic capacity [median (IQR)] was 32.3 (27.9-42.1) ml O2/kg x min at disease onset, and 33.2 (28.4-38.9) at follow-up (p>0.05). Baseline aerobic capacity was associated with follow-up values of: BMI (rs = -.401, p = .047), waist circumference (rs = -.498, p = .011), peripheral pulse pressure (rs = -.415, p = .039) self-efficacy (rs = .420, p = .037) and aerobic capacity (rs = .557, p = .004). In multiple regression models adjusted for baseline aerobic capacity, disease activity at baseline and over time predicted aerobic capacity at follow-up (AUC DAS28, 0-24 months; β = -.14, p = .004). At follow-up, aerobic capacity was inversely associated with blood glucose levels (rs = -.508, p = .016), BMI (rs = -.434, p = .030), body fat% (rs = -.419, p = .037), aortic pulse pressure (rs = -.405, p = .044), resting heart rate (rs = -.424, p = .034) and self-efficacy (rs = .464, p = .020) at follow-up. We conclude that the aerobic capacity was maintained over 16 years. High baseline aerobic capacity associated with favourable measures of cardiovascular risk factors at follow-up. Higher disease activity in early stages of RA predicted lower aerobic capacity after 16.2 years.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Public library science , 2017. Vol. 12, no 12, article id e0190211
National Category
Rheumatology and Autoimmunity
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-143932DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0190211ISI: 000418651500042PubMedID: 29272303OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-143932DiVA, id: diva2:1174547
Available from: 2018-01-16 Created: 2018-01-16 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Aspects of physical activity in Rheumatoid Arthritis: associations with inflammation and cardiovascular risk factors
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Aspects of physical activity in Rheumatoid Arthritis: associations with inflammation and cardiovascular risk factors
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Background: Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD), partially attributable to systemic inflammation and traditional risk factors for CVD. Since physical activity (PA) is strongly related to CVD in the general population, the aim of this thesis was to describe aspects of PA in patients with RA, and further to analyse associations with disease activity, traditional risk factors for CVD and subclinical atherosclerosis.

Methods: In papers I and II, newly diagnosed RA patients were followed for two (n=66) and mean (SD) 16 (2) (n=25) years respectively. Disease activity and aerobic capacity were measured in both groups.​ In paper II, the 25 patients were also examined for traditional risk factors for CVD, body composition, with pulse wave analysis and carotid ultrasound. Self-efficacy was assessed using a questionnaire. In paper III, a combined heart rate and movement monitor was used to measure PA in 84 patients with early (<2 years) and 37 patients with long-standing (mean [SD] 16 [2] years) RA. Data were analysed for associations with disease activity, traditional risk factors for CVD and subclinical atherosclerosis, as above. Finally, in paper IV, a pilot study including 13 patients, median (Q1-Q3) age 57 (44-64) years, was conducted to analyse the feasibility as well as the effects of ten weeks of spinning exercise, on aerobic capacity, traditional risk factors for CVD and inflammation.

Results: In papers I and II, aerobic capacity was maintained at follow-up. In paper I, median (Q1-Q3) aerobic capacity was 31 (27-39) ml/kg x min at baseline and 33 (25-38) ml/kg x min after two years. In paper II, median (Q1-Q3) aerobic capacity was 32 (28-42) ml/kg x min at baseline and 33 (28-39) ml/kg x min after 16 years. In multiple linear regression analyses, adjusted for baseline aerobic capacity, disease activity during the first two years after diagnosis explained 53 % of the aerobic capacity level after 16 years [b=-0.14, p<0.004]. Higher aerobic capacity was associated with more favourable measures of risk factors for CVD and self-efficacy over time and at follow-up. In paper III, 37 % of the patients with early and 43 % of the patients with long-standing RA, did not reach the national recommendations of PA. Total PA as well as more time spent in moderate to vigorous PA were associated with more favourable risk factors for CVD. Patients with higher disease activity and functional disability were less physically active. In paper IV, intensive spinning exercise proved to be a feasible method, that significantly improved aerobic capacity, systolic blood pressure and the number of tender joints.

Conclusions: Aerobic capacity, which could be maintained despite several years of disease, was related to risk factors for CVD and to self-efficacy. Higher disease activity in early disease predicted lower aerobic capacity after 16 years. Higher PA level was associated with a more beneficial cardiovascular profile, however, an insufficient level of PA was found in a substantial proportion of patients. Furthermore, we found, that intensive spinning exercise was a feasible method for the group included, to improve aerobic capacity and blood pressure without detrimental effects on disease activity. Physical activity and aerobic capacity have roles to play in the cardio protective management and are, as other modifiable risk factors, suggested to be estimated regularly. Higher disease activity is known to increase the risk of CVD in RA, and as disease activity also seems to negatively impact future aerobic capacity, interventions and support for health enhancing PA should have high priority in these patients. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå, Sweden: Umeå University, 2018. p. 84
Series
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 1949
Keywords
physiotherapy, rheumatoid arthritis, cardiovascular disease, aerobic capacity, physical activity, exercise, primary prevention
National Category
Rheumatology and Autoimmunity
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-145637 (URN)978-91-7601-850-7 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-04-06, Aulan, Vårdvetarhuset, Lasarettsbacken 7, Umeå, 09:00 (Swedish)
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Available from: 2018-03-16 Created: 2018-03-12 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved

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