Prevalence of subjective voice impairment in rheumatoid arthritis.
Fisher BA., Dolan K., Hastings L., McClinton C., Taylor PC.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) might lead to voice impairment through several mechanisms but its prevalence has been little investigated. RA patients attending a rheumatology outpatient clinic had joint assessments and completed the Voice Handicap Index-10 (VHI-10). A comparator group consisted of patients attending the department with other diseases. Seventy-three patients with RA and 73 comparators were recruited. Four patients with RA (5%) and one comparator (1%) had significantly abnormal VHI-10 scores. RA patients with a Disease Activity Score 28 >3.2, indicating more active disease, had significantly higher VHI-10 scores. A low prevalence of self-reported voice handicap occurs in RA and associates with more active disease.