Prevalence and course of lower limb disease activity and walking disability over the first 5 years of juvenile idiopathic arthritis: results from the childhood arthritis prospective study

Gordon J. Hendry*, Stephanie J. Shoop-Worrall, Jody L. Riskowski, Pamela Andrews, Eileen Baildam, Alice Chieng, Joyce Davidson, Yiannis Ioannou, Flora McErlane, Lucy R. Wedderburn, Kimme Hyrich, Wendy Thomson, Martijn Steultjens

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

Objective: The aim was to investigate the time course of lower limb disease activity and walking disability in children with JIA over a 5-year course.

Methods: The Childhood Arthritis Prospective Study is a longitudinal study of children with a new JIA diagnosis. Childhood Arthritis Prospective Study data include demographics and core outcome variables at baseline, 6 months and yearly thereafter. Prevalence and transition rates from baseline to 5 years were obtained for active and limited joint counts at the hip, knee, ankle and foot joints; and walking disability, measured using the Childhood Health Assessment Questionnaire walking subscale. Missing data were accounted for using multiple imputation.

Results: A total of 1041 children (64% female), with a median age of 7.7 years at first visit, were included. Baseline knee and ankle synovitis prevalence was 71 and 34%, respectively, decreasing to 8-20 and 6-12%, respectively, after 1 year. Baseline hip and foot synovitis prevalence was <11%, decreasing to <5% after 6 months. At least mild walking disability was present in 52% at baseline, stabilizing at 25-30% after 1 year.

Conclusion: Lower limb synovitis and walking disability are relatively common around the time of initial presentation in children and young people with JIA. Mild to moderate walking disability persisted in ∼25% of patients for the duration of the study, despite a significant reduction in the frequency of lower limb synovitis. This suggests that there is an unmet need for non-medical strategies designed to prevent and/or resolve persistent walking disability in JIA.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberrky039
JournalRheumatology Advances in Practice
Volume2
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 24 Nov 2018

Keywords

  • juvenile idiopathic arthritis
  • epidemiology
  • lower limb
  • ankle
  • foot
  • hip
  • synovitis
  • walking disability
  • prevalence

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