What are we measuring? An examination of self-reported functional status measures

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Quantitative Health Sciences

Publication Date


Document Type



Activities of Daily Living; Arthritis, Rheumatoid; *Disability Evaluation; Humans; Joints; Locomotion; Mental Health; Movement; Pain; Questionnaires; *Self Concept; Statistics as Topic; Time Factors


Biostatistics | Epidemiology | Health Services Research


Functional status questionnaires are being used in various types of studies. To determine factors related to self-reported functional ability for rheumatoid arthritis patients, we examined the relationship between a functional and mental health questionnaire and objective disease-specific measures. Using 3-5 predictor variables, we explained 43-57% of the variance in patients' self-reported functioning. Mental and physical health perceptions were significant predictors for each self-reported functional measure. The relationships among mental health and self-reported functioning should be considered when interpreting studies that use functional status questionnaires.

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Citation: Arthritis Rheum. 1988 Jun;31(6):721-8. Link to article on publisher's site

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Link to Article in PubMed

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Arthritis and rheumatism