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.
Disability Dysphonia Rheumatoid arthritis VHI Voice Voice handicap index
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