FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Missouri Arthritis and Osteoporosis Program
June 5, 2015 (888) 702-8818
Arthritis Makes Life Tougher for Missourians Living with Chronic Conditions; Self-Management Programs Can Help
What is one thing diabetes and heart disease have in common? Both are chronic (continuing or occur again over a long amount of time) health conditions that are comorbidities for people who also have arthritis. A comorbidity is when a person has two or more health conditions that occur at the same time or one after another. Approximately 1 in 6 U.S. adults has arthritis and one or more other chronic health conditions (CDC, 2013). In Missouri, 54% (237,000) of adults with diabetes also have arthritis (BRFSS, 2013). We could fill Arrowhead Stadium (home of the Kansas City Chiefs) to capacity nearly three times with these Missourians who have both diabetes and arthritis. Of Missourians with cardiovascular disease, 52% (186,000) also have arthritis (BRFSS, 2013). To put this in perspective, if we filled Busch Stadium (home of the St. Louis Cardinals) four times with the Missourians who have both cardiovascular disease and arthritis, there would still be over 10,000 adults waiting outside.
According to the June 5th CDC MMWR, The Impact of Multiple Chronic Conditions on Selected Life Domains – United States, 2013, compared to people without chronic conditions, adults with a chronic condition are more likely to report work disability, serious psychological distress, and limitations on social activities outside their home. Adults with arthritis as one of their chronic conditions are even more likely to report these negative effects. Half of Missouri adults with arthritis reported activity limitation as a result of their arthritis. Twenty percent (245,000) of all adults with arthritis indicated it caused restrictions in their social participation (BRFSS, 2013). Of working-age (18-64) Missourians with arthritis, 40% (308,000) have some work limitation due to their arthritis (BRFSS, 2013).
Non-drug options to reduce pain and improve function include increasing physical activity and participating in self-management programs. Only 11% of Missouri adults with arthritis have attended a self-management course or class to learn how to manage their arthritis (BRFSS, 2013). If Missourians with arthritis (1,308,000) (BRFSS, 2013) stood along I-70 from the Kansas border to the Illinois border, over 5,200 people would stand per mile. The number of Missouri adults with arthritis (11% or 133,000) who have attended a self-management course or class to learn to manage their arthritis (BRFSS, 2013) would only stand along the section of I-70 between Boonville and Columbia. The Missouri Arthritis and Osteoporosis Program (MAOP) looks forward to raising awareness of and participation in self-management programs within the next year through existing healthcare partnerships.
“People living with arthritis and other chronic conditions need to know that there are resources available to help them lessen their pain and improve their quality of life,” said Beth Richards, Director of the MAOP. “We have seven Regional Arthritis Centers (RACs) throughout the state that offer group Steps to Better Health physical activity and self-management education programs, such as Living a Healthy Life (CDSMP), Tomando Control de su Salud, Living a Healthy Life with Diabetes (DSMP), Walk With Ease, and the Arthritis Foundation Exercise Program. The Arthritis Toolkit and an individual version of the Walk With Ease program are also offered for individuals to complete at-home. These programs are proven to reduce the negative effects associated with arthritis (e.g. pain, depression) and other chronic conditions (e.g. heart disease, diabetes).”
To learn more about managing arthritis and other chronic conditions, please visit the Missouri Arthritis and Osteoporosis Program website, www.moarthritis.org, or by calling 1-888-702-8818.