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OBJECTIVE: To study, both qualitatively and quantitatively, morning stiffness in consecutive patients attending a rheumatology clinic. METHODS: A detailed interview from 93 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and 46 patients with noninflammatory joint disease. RESULTS: Occurrence, duration and severity of morning stiffness were similar in both groups, as was its detailed qualitative description. Patients with RA with active disease had higher severity scores of morning stiffness than those with inactive disease. CONCLUSION: Morning stiffness is a poor discriminator between RA and noninflammatory joint disease. Its assessment by a severity score is better than one based on duration.


Journal article


J rheumatol

Publication Date





1138 - 1142


Adult, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Arthritis, Rheumatoid, Circadian Rhythm, Female, Humans, Joints, Male, Middle Aged, Movement, Severity of Illness Index, Time Factors