Pain behavior in rheumatoid arthritis patients: identification of pain behavior subgroups.
This study used Ward's minimum variance hierarchical cluster analysis to identify homogeneous subgroups of rheumatoid arthritis patients suffering from chronic pain who exhibited similar pain behavior patterns during a videotaped behavior sample. Ninety-two rheumatoid arthritis patients were divided into two samples. Six motor pain behaviors were examined: guarding, bracing, active rubbing, rigidity, grimacing, and sighing. The cluster analysis procedure identified four similar subgroups in Samples 1 and 2. The first subgroup exhibited low levels of all pain behaviors. The second subgroup exhibited a high level of guarding and low levels of other pain behaviors. The third subgroup exhibited high levels of guarding and rigidity and low levels of other pain behaviors. The fourth subgroup exhibited high levels of guarding and active rubbing and low levels of other pain behaviors. Sample 1 contained a fifth subgroup that exhibited a high level of active rubbing and low levels of other pain measures. The results of this study suggest that there are homogeneous subgroups within rheumatoid arthritis patient populations who differ in the motor pain behaviors they exhibit.
Waters, SJ; Riordan, PA; Keefe, FJ; Lefebvre, JC
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