On-Site PhD conferral mr. Casper J.P. Webers
Supervisors: prof.dr. A. Boonen, prof.dr. A. van Tubergen
Key words: axial spondyloarthritis, Bechterew’ disease, depression, differences man-woman work, costs
"Health and economic outcomes in axial spondyloarhthritis. A matter of perspective"
This research focused on axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA), an inflammatory disorder that mainly involves the spine. Investigated were several outcomes of axSpA, of relevance to both the individual patient as well as society. It was observed that male patients develop more damage to their spine, while female patients experience a worse quality of life. In addition, depressive symptoms are frequently present in patients with axSpA, but appropriate management of axSpA tends to improve these depressive symptoms as well. It was also demonstrated that patients with axSpA are less likely to be employed compared to the general population, despite the availability of effective treatments, and that they regularly incur sick leave because of their disease. Sick leave due to axSpA turned out to be predictive of future sick leave, and can be considered a warning signal. Finally, it was shown that, also in the future, it remains worthwhile for society to keep investing in better diagnosis of axSpA.