The goal of our study was to evaluate the associations between various definitions of radiographic hand osteoarthritis (OA) and self-reported hand pain. We conducted a cross-sectional study with 3604 participants from the Osteoarthritis Initiative (OAI). Posteroanterior radiographs of the dominant hand were read using a modified Kellgren–Lawrence (KL) scale. For our primary analysis, hand OA at person level was defined as two or more finger joints with KL grade 2 or higher. In addition, for the purpose of exploratory analyses, we explored more conservative definitions of hand OA as well as different sum scores and digit- and row-based scores. The majority of definitions of radiographic hand OA were statistically significantly associated with self-reported hand pain. In our main analysis, persons with two or more finger joints with KL grade > 2 were approximately two times more likely to self-report hand pain than persons without radiographic hand OA. Increasing KL grades and increasing number of joints affected lead to stronger associations. Almost all definitions of hand OA were related to pain. Individuals with more severely affected joints or with higher number of affected joints are more likely to report hand pain than their peers. Specifically, individuals with hand joints with KL 3 or 4 have the greatest likelihood of hand pain.
Rheumatology International – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 22, 2017
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