Objective: Hospitalization process causes a variety of physical problems. The decrease of hand use in daily life during hospitalization brings hand dysfunction to mind in inpatients. The aim of this study is to compare the hand functions of hospitalized patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) to outpatients in detail.
Methods: Grip and pinch strengths of both hospitalized patients in rheumatology service and outpatients on the routine control day were measured. In addition, 9-Hole Peg Test was performed and the disability level was determined by the Turkish version of Michigan Hand Outcomes Questionnaire (MHOQ).
Results: While grip strength and MHOQ scores were similar (p>0.05) in both groups, all three pinch strengths (lateral, bipod, tripod) and 9HPT scores were lower (p<0.05) in hospitalized patients.
Conclusion: Consequently, besides disease activity, hospitalization process also impairs fine hand functions in rheumatological patients. Evaluation of fine hand functions and appropriate rehabilitative interventions may prevent further disability in hospitalized patients.