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The factor structure of the Arthritis Helplessness Index (AHI) was examined using principal components factor analysis with varimax rotation. Data for the initial factor analysis came from a longitudinal study of 368 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Two slightly negatively correlated (r = -0.21) subscales emerged: internality and helplessness. This analysis was cross-validated twice. Findings reveal that the 2 subscales of the AHI are more reliable and valid than the total score. The 5 item helplessness subscale, in particular, appears to be a highly valid indicator of the degree to which patients with RA feel overwhelmed by their disease.