The aims of this study were to assess the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in patients with self-reported rheumatic diseases (RD), to classify self-reported rheumatic patients in groups according to their health state and to explore the associations between health status and sociodemographic variables. Data came from the Portuguese Epidemiologic study of the RD. A sample of the Portuguese population aged 18 or more (n = 10,661) stratified by region and locality dimension was interviewed by trained interviewers and answered a standardized questionnaire that included the SF-36v1, the EQ-5D-3L, medical history, identification of potential rheumatic diseases, sociodemographic characteristics, among others. Descriptive statistics and parametric tests were used to compare HRQoL of respondents with and without RD. Comparisons with normative data from the Portuguese population were also carried out. A cluster analysis was used to classify respondents into homogeneous groups. Regression analyses were used to identify factors associated with HRQoL. Respondents with self-reported RD assigned a lower self-perception to their health status. The burden of disease was observed mainly in physical function, role physical and bodily pain. The EQ-5D-3L dimensions show similar results: the intensity of problems is significantly more evident in respondents with self-reported RD. HRQoL of respondents with self-reported RD is related to sociodemographic variables and is significantly lower when compared with the Portuguese population. Four clusters of homogeneous respondents with self-reported RD were formed and characterized according to a number of variables. Factors associated with HRQoL were identified. In conclusion, suffering from a self-reported RD has a significant impact on self-perceived health status and on the quality of life.
- Health-related quality of life
- Self-reported rheumatic diseases