Navigation Links
Majority of Ontarians suffering from rheumatoid arthritis not receiving needed speciality care
Date:7/6/2010

TORONTO, Ont., July 6, 2010 Nearly 60 per cent of Ontarians with rheumatoid arthritis an autoimmune disease that causes chronic inflammation of the joints were not seen by a specialist within a one year period to treat the debilitating disease, according to a new study. Even more concerning is that women of child-bearing age are less likely to see a specialist than women 45 or older, say researchers from St. Michael's Hospital, the Institute for Clinical and Evaluative Sciences (ICES), and Women's College Hospital.

"People think the aches and pains associated with arthritis are a normal part of aging, leading to delays in seeking care," says Dr. Gillian Hawker, senior scientist at Women's College Research Institute and adjunct scientist at ICES. "But we know early diagnosis and treatment, especially within the first three to six months, is critical to preventing the long-term disability caused by rheumatoid arthritis."

Dr. Hawker is the lead author of the latest chapter of the Project for an Ontario Women's Health Evidence-Based Report (POWER) study. The joint study between St. Michael's Hospital and the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES) is the first in the province to provide a comprehensive overview of women's health in relation to gender, income, education, ethnicity and geography. Funded by Echo: Improving Women's Health in Ontario, an agency of the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, the results from the POWER Study are available for policymakers and health-care providers to improve access, quality and outcomes of care for Ontario women.

In Ontario, an estimated 55,000 women and 22,000 men have been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, with women twice as likely to be affected as men.

"Unfortunately, only 42 per cent of women with rheumatoid arthritis in Ontario see specialists each year, says Dr. Arlene Bierman, a physician at St. Michael's Hospital and principal investigator of the POWER Study. "Low income women are less likely to have seen a specialist than those with higher incomes and a person's likelihood of seeing a specialist depends on where they live in the province. Access to these services is important and there is much that can be done to improve this access through innovations in how we organize and deliver care for chronic disease."

Studies show that primary care physicians may fail to refer patients to specialists because they lack confidence in performing the joint exams necessary to identify and diagnose inflammatory arthritis. And with a limited number of arthritis specialists only 350 in Canada including some who are strictly academics and don't see patients, access to speciality care may be limited.

For 45-year-old Lynn Robinson, the lack of early diagnosis and treatment kept her off work and in severe pain for months.

"Each day, the pain became progressively worse until I couldn't dress myself, brush my teeth or even hold a pen," said Robinson, who first began experiencing the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis in 2008. "I was off work and in excruciating pain. My doctor dismissed the idea that the symptoms could be arthritis until I finally pushed to see a specialist who confirmed my suspicion. Now I'm on treatment and have been able to resume my daily activities, pain free."

The POWER study released today examined the impact of musculoskeletal conditions diseases that affect the bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles and joints on health status and disability and quality of care for Ontarians with osteoarthritis and osteoporosis. Key findings include:

  • About 40 per cent of women and 35 per cent of men living with a musculoskeletal disease, including arthritis, also suffer from at least one other common chronic condition, such as diabetes or heart disease.

  • Women who have musculoskeletal disease have higher rates of disability than men with these conditions. Nearly 40 per cent of women and about 23 per cent of men living with musculoskeletal disease reported moderate to severe disability including limitations to their daily activities such as housework, laundry, grocery shopping, dressing, or washing.

  • Physical therapy is important to managing musculoskeletal conditions. But only 15 per cent of adults with these conditions reported seeing a physiotherapist at least once in the previous year.

  • Gaps in the care of osteoporosis a common musculoskeletal disease persist. Two thirds of men and women who required it after a fracture did not receive a bone mineral density test or medication to reduce the risk of a subsequent fracture.

"The findings reinforce what we've been seeing in previous chapters," says Pat Campbell, Echo CEO. "There is a need to improve access to services and strengthen the integration of services across our health-care system. Policy-makers need to address these issues to ensure equity and quality care for all."


'/>"/>

Contact: Julie Saccone
sacconej@smh.ca
416-864-5047
St. Michael's Hospital
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Majority of young victims of unintentional shootings shot by another youth
2. New Poll Finds Majority of Americans Are Unaware of Issues Facing Iraq/Afghanistan Veterans and Troops
3. R-Biopharm Group Purchases a Majority Ownership in Trilogy Lab, Expanding US Operations
4. For Vast Majority, Driving and Cell Phones Dont Mix
5. New iVillage Study Reveals That Majority of Women 18-34 Go Online First With Health Questions - Before Turning to Their Doctor or Other Family Members
6. Pew Report Finds Majority of States Fail to Ensure Proper Dental Health & Access to Care for Children
7. Majority of Marylanders without advance medical directives
8. Majority of Americans Approve of President Obamas Handling of Afghanistan and National Security But Disapprove of Handling of Economic Issues, Per Franklin & Marshall College Poll With Hearst Television
9. Virginia House Majority Leader Morgan Griffith Sponsors Legislation Enabling Mobile Solution for Health Care SALEM, Va.
10. Former Senate Majority Leaders Baker, Daschle and Dole Commend Senate Passage of Health Care Bill
11. New Commonwealth Fund survey of young adults finds wide majority support health reform
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/20/2017)... ... February 20, 2017 , ... Sensogram Technologies ... by for a visit this week at HIMSS 2017 Conference & Exhibition. The ... the globe. Sensogram will be featured in the conference’s Connected Health Experience section, ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... Petersburg, Fla. (PRWEB) , ... February 20, 2017 , ... ... its research and education building. A topping out ceremony on Friday marked the halfway ... The building, set to open in Fall 2018, will serve as a center for ...
(Date:2/19/2017)... South Carolina (PRWEB) , ... February 19, 2017 , ... ... of evening undergraduate nursing students, is being led by Amelia Joseph, Ph.D. Joseph was ... the initial operations of the nursing department in early 2016. After a nation-wide search, ...
(Date:2/19/2017)... ... February 19, 2017 , ... ... healthcare, will join forces with Healthwise ® at HIMSS 2017 ... industry leader in evidence-based health education, technology and services, will demonstrate a voice-powered ...
(Date:2/18/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... CONTACT:, Glenn Vallecillos, MD, ... plastic surgeon Dr. Glenn Vallecillos experiments SculpSure, the hot, new, aesthetic, ... surgery has been centered around that idea that to achieve ones desired results ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/20/2017)... DUBLIN , Feb 20, 2017 ... "Hernia Repair Devices Global Market -Forecast to 2022" report ... ... obesity, the rise in aging population, rising adoption of tension ... are driving the growth of hernia repair devices global market. ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... February 20, 2017 The ... USD 58.4 billion by 2025, according to a ... market is driven by technological advancements in veterinary ... opportunities to the market. For instance, MediLabSecure, a ... of identifying emerging viruses and pathogens in 19 ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... Feb. 20, 2017   Alberty   ... Batavia, NY has announced a significant shift ... and wellness programs to servicing local Veteran Affairs Centers ... budgets and an increased need to secure cost effective ... to source locally for their goods & services. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: