Scientific article

An Internet-based technique for the identification of persons with symptoms of inflammatory polyarthritis of less than 12 weeks

Published inClinical rheumatology, vol. 34, no. 3, p. 465-470
Publication date2015

Identifying persons with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a major challenge. The role of the Internet in making decisions about seeking care has not been studied. We developed a method for early diagnosis and referral using the Arthritis Foundation's website. A person with less than 3 months of joint pain symptom who has not yet sought medical attention was screened. Prescreened persons are linked to a self-scoring questionnaire and get a "likelihood" of RA statement. If "likely," the person is offered a free evaluation and biomarker testing performed by Quest Diagnostics. The system available only to Massachusetts's residents yielded a small steady flow of screen-positive individuals. Over 21 months, 43,244 persons took the Arthritis Foundation website prescreening questionnaire; 196 were from Massachusetts and 60 took the self-scoring algorithm. Of the 48 who screened positive, 29 set up an appointment for a free evaluation, but six never came in. Twenty-four subjects were evaluated and diagnosed independently by three rheumatologists. One met the 1987 American College of Rheumatology (ACR) criteria for RA and two met the 2010 ACR/EULAR RA criteria. The 24 examined individuals were contacted at a minimum of 1 year and asked to redo the case-finding questionnaire and asked about their health resource utilization during the interval. Seventeen of the 24 subjects responded, and 10 had seen a health professional. Three of the 17 had a diagnosis of RA; all were on at least methotrexate. Internet case finding was useful in identifying new potential RA cases. The system's performance characteristics are theoretically limited only by the number of study sites available. However, the major barrier may be that seeing a health professional is not a priority for many individuals with early symptoms.

Citation (ISO format)
LIANG, Matthew H et al. An Internet-based technique for the identification of persons with symptoms of inflammatory polyarthritis of less than 12 weeks. In: Clinical rheumatology, 2015, vol. 34, n° 3, p. 465–470. doi: 10.1007/s10067-014-2796-7
Main files (1)
Article (Published version)
ISSN of the journal0770-3198

Technical informations

Creation01/27/2015 3:24:00 PM
First validation01/27/2015 3:24:00 PM
Update time03/14/2023 10:46:01 PM
Status update03/14/2023 10:46:00 PM
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