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Joint hypermobility is modestly associated with disabling and limiting musculoskeletal pain Results from a large scale general population based survey



Joint hypermobility is modestly associated with disabling and limiting musculoskeletal pain Results from a large scale general population based survey







The aim of this study was to determine the population prevalence of joint hypermobility (JH) and to test the hypothesis that JH would be associated with reporting musculoskeletal pain. We conducted a cross-sectional population survey in Aberdeen city and Cheshire. 45949 questionnaires were mailed which assessed JH and the presence, distribution, duration and severity of musculoskeletal pain. Based on their pain reports, participants were classified as having chronic widespread pain (CWP), some pain, or no pain. Multinominal logistic regression tested the relationship between JH and pain status. Associations were adjusted for age, sex and other putative confounders. Participants with no pain were the referent category. are presented as relative risk ratios (RRR), 95% confidence intervals (CI). 12,853 (29.3%) participants returned a questionnaire with complete data. 2,354 (18.3%) participants were classified as hypermobile. 2,094 participants (16.3%) had CWP and 5,801 (45.1%) had some pain and 4,958 participants (38.6%) reported no pain. JH participants were significantly more likely to report CWP than non-JH participants (18.5% vs. 15.8%, p<0.001). After adjusting for age and sex, hypermobile participants were 40% more likely to report the most severe CWP (1.4 (1.1-1.7), p<0.00). After further adjustments for employment status, smoking, alcohol and physical activity, JH remained significantly associated with the most severe CWP (1.6 (1.3-2.1), p<0.000) and some pain (1.3 (1.02-1.6), p=0.03). JH was associated with severe pain; however this relationship was not specific to CWP. The relationship was relatively modest and may be explained by unmeasured confounding factors such as psychological distress.

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Accession: 036762436

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DOI: 10.1002/acr.21979


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