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BMJ Publishing Group, RMD Open, 2(8), p. e002514, 2022

DOI: 10.1136/rmdopen-2022-002514



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Does gender influence outcome measures similarly in patients with spondyloarthritis? Results from the ASAS-perSpA study

This paper is made freely available by the publisher.
This paper is made freely available by the publisher.

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Data provided by SHERPA/RoMEO


ObjectivesTo investigate the influence of gender on disease outcomes in patients with spondyloarthritis (SpA), including across SpA subtypes.MethodsData from 4185 patients of 23 countries with a diagnosis of axial SpA (axSpA), peripheral SpA (pSpA) or psoriatic arthritis (PsA) from the Assessment of SpondyloArthritis International Society (ASAS)-perSpA study were analysed. Associations between gender and disease activity (Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Score (ASDAS), Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Score (BASDAI), C-reactive protein (CRP)), function (Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Functional Index (BASFI)) and overall health (ASAS Health Index (ASAS HI), European Quality of Life Five Dimension (EQ-5D)) outcomes were investigated. Multilevel multivariable linear mixed models adjusted for relevant confounders (and stratified by disease subtype in case of a relevant interaction) were used.ResultsIn total, 65%, 10% and 25% of patients had axSpA, pSpA and PsA, respectively. axSpA was more frequent in males (68%), whereas pSpA and PsA were more frequent in females (53% and 52%, respectively). A significant interaction between gender and disease subtype was found for ASDAS, BASDAI and BASFI. While being female independently contributed to higher BASDAI across the three disease subtypes (with varying magnitude), female gender was only associated with higher ASDAS in pSpA (β (95% CI): 0.36 (0.15 to 0.58)) and PsA (0.25 (0.12 to 0.38)) but not in axSpA (0.016 (−0.07 to 0.11)). No associations were observed between gender and CRP levels. Female gender was associated with higher ASAS HI and EQ-5D, without differences across disease subtype.ConclusionFemale gender is associated with less favourable outcome measures across the SpA spectrum. However, while female gender influences BASDAI across the three subtypes, ASDAS is associated with gender only in pSpA and PsA but not in axSpA. Therefore, ASDAS is an appropriate instrument both for females and males with axSpA.