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Prevalence of musculoskeletal symptoms in the five urban regions of Brazil—the Brazilian COPCORD study (BRAZCO)

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The objective of this study is to describe the prevalence of musculoskeletal symptoms (MSK-S) in the five urban geographical regions of Brazil using the Portuguese version of the Community Oriented Program for Control of Rheumatic Diseases (COPCORD) core questionnaire (CQ)—BRAZCO study. From April to May 2013, a population-based survey was conducted by applying the CQ for 5000 individuals aged over 15 years in 16 capitals of the Brazilian regions. Trained teams assessed the MSK-S and socioeconomic status. The sample consisted of representative quotas of the Brazilian population, proportional to the capitals’ population density. It respected the groups’ quotas of gender and age and included all socioeconomic classes, educational levels, and occupations. There were 1342 (26.9 %) participants who presented MSK-S unrelated to trauma in 7 days preceding the interview. A higher prevalence of these complaints were in females (65.2 %), elderly people, in the north region of the country (30.7 %), and a lower prevalence was found in single individuals (41.7 %) and in the south (23.3 %). The most frequent pain sites were the spine (76.7 %) and knees (49.6 %), and the mean pain intensity was 6.8 (VAS). The BRAZCO study shows that Brazilian population presents a higher rate of MSK-S unrelated to trauma than many Asian countries. These results can be applied to guide the assessment of prevalence of rheumatic diseases. Additionally, it can help in the design of policies for health care workforce organization and its accessibility, as well as to reduce the risk of rheumatic diseases at the community level.

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Funding statement

This study was supported by the Brazilian Health Ministry - Cooperation Term with Universidade Federal de São Paulo # 136/2011.

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Correspondence to Edgard Torres dos Reis-Neto.

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dos Reis-Neto, E.T., Ferraz, M.B., Kowalski, S.C. et al. Prevalence of musculoskeletal symptoms in the five urban regions of Brazil—the Brazilian COPCORD study (BRAZCO). Clin Rheumatol 35, 1217–1223 (2016).

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