To improve the quality and participation in pediatric rheumatology research, patient-prioritized studies should be emphasized. We collaborated with United States–based pediatric rheumatology advocacy organizations to survey patients and caregivers of children with rheumatic diseases to identify what research topics were most important to them.

Methods We conducted Web-based surveys and focus groups (FG) of patients and caregivers of children with juvenile myositis (JM), juvenile arthritis (JA), and childhood-onset systemic lupus erythematosus (cSLE). Surveys were emailed to listservs and posted to social media sites of JM, JA, and cSLE patient advocacy organizations. An initial survey asked open-ended questions about patient/caregiver research preferences. Responses were further characterized through FG. A final ranking survey asked respondents to rank from a list of research themes the 7 most important to them.

Results There were 365 JM respondents, 44 JA respondents, and 32 cSLE respondents to the final ranking survey. The top research priority for JM was finding new treatments, and for JA and cSLE, the priority was understanding genetic/environmental etiology. The 3 prioritized research themes common across all disease groups were medication side effects, disease flare, and disease etiology.

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