Are you suffering from?
- Swelling in one or more joints
- Stiffness around the joints that lasts for more than an hour in the morning
- Constant or recurring pain in a joint
- Difficulty using or moving a joint normally
- Warmth and redness in a joint
You may be one of more than 46 million people in the United States with arthritis or another rheumatic disease.
Rheumatic diseases affect people of all races and ages, but some rheumatic conditions are more common among certain populations. For example:
- Rheumatoid arthritis occurs 2-3 times more often in women than in men.
- Between 80 and 90 percent of those diagnosed with fibromyalgia are women.
- Gout is more common in men than in women.
- Systemic lupus erythematosus is more common in women than in men.
Source: National Institutes of Health
Put simply, arthritis means joint inflammation or swelling. Arthritis refers to any condition that affects the joints. These conditions fall within the category of rheumatic diseases, which are diseases characterized by inflammation of the joints, tendons, ligaments, bones and/or muscles. Rheumatic diseases can sometimes involve internal organs. They can also include autoimmune diseases, which occur when the immune system harms the body’s own tissues instead of protecting them.
Get solutions for rheumatic disease so you can live healthier.
When you’re suffering from pain, inflammation, and other symptoms of a rheumatic disease, you need the expertise of a rheumatology specialist. At Primary Care Plus, you’ll receive this high quality care right here in our offices, or we will coordinate your care with a trusted rheumatologist to whom we refer.
Your rheumatologist starts by listening to you and understanding your concerns. Then, a thorough evaluation is performed and a treatment plan is designed to address your condition. Treatments may include:
- Rest and relaxation
- Appropriate exercise
- A healthy diet
- Medication for pain, inflammation and other symptoms
- Assistive devices, such as splints or braces
Treatments are available for many types of rheumatic diseases, including:
- Osteoarthritis – This condition affects both the cartilage of the joint and the underlying bone, causing joint pain and stiffness. It is most debilitating when it affects the spine, knees and/or hips.
- Rheumatoid arthritis – An inflammatory disease of the immune system that targets the lining of the joint and leads to pain, stiffness, swelling, joint damage, and loss of function. Rheumatoid arthritis most often affects joints of the hands and feet.
- Fibromyalgia – A chronic disorder that causes pain throughout the tissues that support and move the bones and joints. Fibromyalgia causes pain, stiffness, and tenderness, and can also cause fatigue and sleep disturbances.
- Systemic lupus erythematosus (lupus or SLE) – A disease in which the immune system harms the body’s own healthy cells and tissues, causing inflammation of and damage to the joints, skin, kidneys, heart, lungs, blood vessels, and brain.
- Gout – Caused by deposits of needle-like crystals of uric acid in the joints. The crystals cause inflammation, swelling, and pain in the affected joint, which is often the big toe.
- Bursitis – Inflammation of the bursae (small, fluid-filled sacs that help reduce friction between bones and other moving parts in the joints). Bursitis causes pain and tenderness and can limit the movement of nearby joints.
- Tendonitis – Inflammation of tendons (tough cords of tissue that connect muscle to bone) caused by overuse, injury, or a rheumatic condition. Tendonitis produces pain and tenderness and can restrict joint movement.