Culture, Community, and Health Studies, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (Clarke Division), University of Toronto, and University Health Network (Princess Margaret Hospital), Toronto, Ontario, Canada. firstname.lastname@example.org
Our objective was to investigate whether quality of life in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) differs across ethnoracial groups and to identify factors that may explain race-related differences. Self-administered questionnaire data from 335 White, 40 Black, and 30 Asian women with SLE were obtained from a multi-center database. Measures assessed illness intrusiveness, psychological well-being, depressive symptoms, musculoskeletal pain, and learned helplessness. Extent of SLE disease activity was indexed by self-reported functional-system involvement. Educational attainment was indicated by number of years in school. Principal-components analysis reduced the four psychosocial measures to a single factor score. This represented psychosocial well-being In path analysis. Psychosocial well-being differed significantly across the three groups, with Whites reporting the highest, and Blacks the lowest, levels. Path analysis indicated that illness intrusiveness accounted for this race-related difference. Although disease activity was significantly associated with psychosocial well-being, it did not differ across ethnoracial groups. Illness intrusiveness and educational attainment emerged as independent mediators of the race-related difference in psychosocial well-being. We conclude that race-related quality-of-life differences exist among women with SLE and are mediated independently by illness intrusiveness and educational attainment.