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Aims: This study assessed some haemo-rheological parameters on individuals with Rheumatoid Arthritis disease.
Study Design: A cross sectional, case-control field based design was employed with a total of eighty-six subjects consisting of thirty-one males and fifty-five females aged between 20- 80 years. Thirty-nine positive subjects for rheumatoid arthritis served as test while forty-seven negative subjects were used as control.
Methodology: Samples obtained were screened using latex agglutination method for the presence of rheumatoid factor, fibrinogen estimation was done using ELISA method, packed cell volume was determined using microhaeamatocrit method, erythrocyte sedimentation rate was determined using Westergren method and haemoglobin concentration was determined using cyanmethaemoglobin method. Data obtained were analyzed using Graph-pad prism 8.2 version.
Results: Result showed that 45.3% of the studied population were positive for rheumatoid arthritis (females: 31.4%; males: 13.9%). Gender based percentage in relation to positivity for rheumatoid arthritis showed that females (49.0%) were more affected than males (38.7%). Between those without rheumatoid arthritis (control) and those with rheumatoid arthritis (test), there was statistically significant increase in mean values of erythrocyte sedimentation rate in test group when compared to the control group (p < 0.0001); there was no statistical significant difference (p > 0.05) in other parameters. Gender based comparison of studied parameters based on positivity and negativity of rheumatoid arthritis showed a statistically significant increase in erythrocyte sedimentation rate: 36.67 ± 14.87 mm/hr versus 10.79 ± 11.00 mm/hr(p < 0.0001) in test group for males while packed cell volume, haemoglobin and fibrinogen showed no statistically significant difference (p > 0.05). In females, there was statistical significant increase in packed cell volume: 36.56 ± 3.896% versus 33.96 ± 4.501% (p < 0.05) and erythrocyte sedimentation rate: 50.07 ± 28.73 mm/hr versus 25.43 ± 21.77 mm/h (p = 0.0007) in rheumatoid positive females; haemoglobin and fibrinogen concentration showed no statistically difference (p > 0.05).
Conclusion: The percentage positivity for rheumatoid arthritis in the studied subjects was 45.3% with females affected more than males. No statistical significant difference was observed in fibrinogen and haemoglobin concentrations based on the presence of the disease and in-gender comparison. Rheumatoid arthritis is significantly associated with increased erythrocyte sedimentation rate in both male and female with attendant increased packed cell volume in females. This confirms the high rate of inflammation at the joint (synovium) around the microvasculature in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. The arthritis in this study is non-anaemic with respect to mean values of packed cell volume.
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