Table 2

Actions taken by patients with inflammatory arthritis before seeking help from their GP with comparison made for patient delay between those who did and did not undertake this action using independent t-tests

Actions taken before seeking help from GP% (number) of participants undertaking this actionMedian (IQR) patient delay in weeks for those undertaking this actionMedian (IQR) patient delay in weeks for those not undertaking this actionP value*
Bought tablets from the chemist51.1% (273 out of 534)6.9 (2–30.7)4.7 (1.4–23)0.036
Used an ice or heat pack on joint47.8% (254 out of 531)7.6 (2–30.3)4.9 (2–26.1)0.045
Took baths47.4% (251 out of 529)6.3 (2–30.4)5.6 (2–26.1)0.473
Bought joint supports (splints, tubi-grips, etc)37.4% (198 out of 529)4.4 (2.1–18.6)5.1 (2–26.9)0.362
Used alternative therapies25.2% (134 out of 531)8.3 (2–42.1)5.3 (2–26.3)0.020
Bought products from a health shop19.0% (101 out of 532)5.9 (2–36.3)5.9 (2–26)0.182
Modified diet14.4% (76 out of 529)6 (2.1–35.3)6.1 (2–26.3)0.183
Used prayer or sought spiritual guidance8.4% (45 out of 534)4.4 (2.1–18.6)6.3 (2–26.9)0.941
Spoke to a pharmacist7.9% (41 out of 521)5.9 (2–38.1)5.9 (2–26.3)0.544
  • *P value for comparison of those who did and did not undertake this action.