Association of body mass index with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis disease activity: a Portuguese and Brazilian collaborative analysis

Agna Neto, Ana Filipa Mourão, Filipa Oliveira-Ramos, Raquel Campanilho-Marques, Paula Estanqueiro, Manuel Salgado, Margarida Guedes, Daniela Piotto, Nadia Emi Aikawa, José Melo Gomes, Marta Cabral, Marta Conde, Ricardo Figueira, Maria José Santos, João Eurico Fonseca, Maria Teresa Terreri, Helena Canhão

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
10 Downloads (Pure)


OBJECTIVE: To investigate the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and disease activity in patients with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA). METHODS: Patients with JIA, aged ≤18 years, registered at the Rheumatic Diseases Portuguese Register ( in Portugal and Brazil were included. Age- and sex-specific BMI percentiles were calculated based on WHO growth standard charts and categorized into underweight (P <3), normal weight (3≤P≤85), overweight (85 <P ≤97) and obesity (P >97). Disease activity was assessed by Juvenile Arthritis Disease Activity Score (JADAS-27). Uni- and multivariate analyses were performed. RESULTS: A total of 275 patients were included. The prevalence of underweight, normal weight, overweight and obesity was 6.9%, 67.3%, 15.3% and 10.5%, respectively. Underweight patients had significantly higher number of active joints (p <0.001), patient's/parent's global assessment of disease activity (PGA) (p=0.020), physician's global assessment of disease activity (PhGA) (p <0.001), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) (p=0.032) and overall higher JADAS-27 (p <0.001), compared to patients with normal weight, overweight and obesity. In the multivariate regression, underweight persisted significantly associated with higher disease activity, compared to normal weight (B=-9.430, p <0.001), overweight (B=-9.295, p=0.001) and obesity (B=-9.120, p=0.001), when adjusted for age, gender, country, ethnicity, JIA category and therapies used. The diagnosis of RF- (B=3.653, p=0.006) or RF+ polyarticular JIA (B=5.287, p=0.024), the absence of DMARD therapy (B=5.542, p <0.001) and the use of oral GC (B=4.984, p=0.002) were also associated with higher JADAS-27. CONCLUSION: We found an independent association between underweight and higher disease activity in patients with JIA. Further studies are needed to understand the underlying mechanisms of this association.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-14
Number of pages8
JournalActa Reumatológica Portuguesa
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021


  • Juvenile idiopathic arthritis
  • Body mass index


Dive into the research topics of 'Association of body mass index with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis disease activity: a Portuguese and Brazilian collaborative analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this