Objective To evaluate associations between achieving guideline-recommended targets of disease activity, defined by the Disease Activity Score in 28 joints using C-reactive protein level (DAS28-CRP) <2.6, the Simplified Disease Activity Index (SDAI) ≤3.3, or the Clinical Disease Activity Index (CDAI) ≤2.8, and other health outcomes in a longitudinal observational study.
Methods Other defined thresholds included low disease activity (LDA), moderate (MDA), or severe disease activity (SDA). To control for intraclass correlation and estimate effects of independent variables on outcomes of the modified Health Assessment Questionnaire (M-HAQ), the EuroQol 5-domain (EQ-5D; a quality-of-life measure), hospitalization, and durable medical equipment (DME) use, we employed mixed models for continuous outcomes and generalized estimating equations for binary outcomes.
Results Among 1,297 subjects, achievement of recommended disease targets was associated with enhanced physical functioning and lower health resource utilization. After controlling for baseline covariates, achievement of disease targets was associated with significantly enhanced physical functioning based on SDAI ≤3.3 and CDAI ≤2.8 but not DAS28-CRP <2.6. Target attainment was associated with significantly improved EQ-5D. Patients achieving guideline-recommended disease targets were 36-45% less likely to be hospitalized and 23-45% less likely to utilize DME.
Conclusion Attaining recommended target disease-activity measures was associated with enhanced physical functioning and health-related quality of life. Some health outcomes were similar in subjects attaining guideline targets versus LDA. Achieving LDA is a worthy clinical objective in some patients.

Additional Metadata
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1002/acr.22678, hdl.handle.net/1765/84522
Journal Arthritis Care & Research
Alemao, E, Joo, S, Kawabata, H, Al, M.J, Allison, P.D, Rutten-van Mölken, M.P.M.H, … Weinblatt, M.E. (2016). Effects of Achieving Target Measures in Rheumatoid Arthritis on Functional Status, Quality of Life, and Resource Utilization. In Arthritis Care & Research (Vol. 68, pp. 308–317). doi:10.1002/acr.22678