The impact of rehabilitation frequency on the risk of stroke in patients with rheumatoid arthritis

Autoři: Yuan-Yang Cheng aff001;  Shin-Tsu Chang aff001;  Chung-Lan Kao aff002;  Yi-Huei Chen aff007;  Ching-Heng Lin aff007
Působiště autorů: Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Taichung Veterans General Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan aff001;  School of Medicine, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan aff002;  Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Tri-Service General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan aff003;  School of Medicine, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei, Taiwan aff004;  School of Medicine, Chung Shan Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan aff005;  Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan aff006;  Department of Medical Research, Taichung Veterans General Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan aff007
Vyšlo v časopise: PLoS ONE 15(1)
Kategorie: Research Article



Patients with rheumatoid arthritis are at higher risk of developing stroke due to augmented systemic inflammation. While regular exercise has been shown to reduce inflammation in human subjects, the purpose of our study is to determine whether increased frequency of rehabilitation is protective against stroke or not.


A total of 16,224 rheumatoid arthritis patients with a catastrophic illness certificate were identified in our database from 2000 to 2006, and 663 of them developed stroke before the end of 2013. After statistically matching for age, sex, and the time interval between the diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis and stroke, 642 patients without stroke were identified as the control group. Analyses with Student’s t test and Chi-square test were done to compare the clinical characteristics of patients with and without stroke, and logistic regression analysis was then performed to evaluate the odds ratio of stroke.


Higher odds ratio of stroke was revealed in patients with hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and moderate degree of rheumatoid arthritis disease severity. Furthermore, more than 40 rehabilitation sessions per year reduced the risk of developing stroke in patients with moderate disease severity.


Physical activities brought by more rehabilitation sessions are beneficial and should be encouraged in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, particularly for those with higher disease activity but not taking biologic agents.

Klíčová slova:

Exercise – Hemorrhagic stroke – Hyperlipidemia – Hypertension – Inflammatory diseases – Ischemic stroke – Rheumatoid arthritis – stroke


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