Spirituality, Well-Being, and Quality of Life in People with Rheumatoid Arthritis

Susan J. Bartlett, Ralph Piedmont, Andrew Bilderback, Alan K. Matsumoto, Joan M. Bathon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


Objective. To evaluate spirituality, well-being, and quality of life (QOL) among people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Methods. Questionnaires assessing positive and negative affect, depression, QOL and spirituality were completed. Disease activity was assessed by rheumatologic examination. Results. Women (n = 62) had a mean (± SD) age of 53.0 (± 13.0) years with 12 (± 13) swollen and tender joints (STJ). Men (n = 15) were 61.9 (± 13.0) years with 7 (± 11) STJ. Disease activity was associated (P < 0.05) positively with depression (r = 0.23), pain (r = 0.26), poorer self-ratings of health (r = 0.29) and physical role limitations (r = 0.26). Spirituality was associated directly with positive affect (r = 0.26) and higher health perceptions (r = 0.29). In multiple regression, spirituality was an independent predictor of happiness and positive health perceptions, even after controlling disease activity and physical functioning, for age and mood. Conclusion. Spirituality may facilitate emotional adjustment and resilience in people with RA by experiencing more positive feelings and attending to positive elements of their lives.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)778-783
Number of pages6
JournalArthritis Care and Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 15 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Quality of life
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Spirituality
  • Well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology


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