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Patient Education

Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid Arthritis is a chronic, systemic, inflammatory disorder that may affect many tissues and organs but primarily attacks joints. It leads to warmth, decreased range of motion, swelling and pain around joints. In the U.S an estimated 1.3 million people have RA with women affected more frequently than men.


Osteoarthritis is also called degenerative joint disease. It is the most common form of arthritis and occurs when the cartilage in your joints wears down over time. This can lead to pain, stiffness, swelling and difficulty using joints. It can affect any joint but it occurs most often in the knees, hips, back, neck, small joints of the fingers and bases of the thumbs. Nearly 27 million people in the U.S. have OA.


Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis is a condition that causes pain and swelling in the joints in people with psoriasis. Psoriasis is a chronic skin disease characterized by a dry, scaly, itchy rash. Only 10-30% of people with psoriasis develop psoriatic arthritis.


Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
Systemic lupus Erythematosus (SLE or lupus) is a chronic autoimmune disease that can affect the skin, joints, blood, kidneys and other parts of the body. In lupus, the immune system produces antibodies that attack the body’s own tissues.


Sjogren’s Syndrome
Sjogren’s syndrome is an inflammatory autoimmune disease that causes dryness, especially of the eyes and mouth. It can also cause problems in other parts of the body leading to inflammation of the joints, lungs, kidneys, liver, nerves and skin.


Scleroderma means “hard skin”. It is a condition that causes the skin to get tight and harden, and may affect internal organs. It affects women more often than men. There are two types: localized and systemic.


Ankylosing Spondylitis
Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a type of arthritis that primarily affects the spine. The joints and ligaments along the spine become inflamed and cause pain and stiffness. It is a chronic disease and the severity of symptoms and disability varies from person to person.


Gout is a form of arthritis that causes sudden, severe episodes of pain, tenderness, redness, warmth and swelling of joints. It usually affects one joint at a time but can become chronic and affect several joints. The most common joint that is affected is the large joint of the big toe.


A diverse group of disorders characterized by blood vessel inflammation. Both arteries and veins may be affected.


New Patients, What to Expect From your Rheumatology visit?

Your Primary Care Physician, Orthopedic Surgeon, or other specialist referred you to Rheumatology. You may be wondering, what is next, what can you expect from our visit?

What is a Rheumatologist? Rheumatologists are medical doctors who specialize in the diagnosis and management of some autoimmune and musculoskeletal diseases, such as Rheumatoid Arthritis, Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, Sjögren’s Syndrome, Psoriatic Arthritis, Polymyalgia Rheumatica, autoimmune vasculitis, inflammatory myositis, and gout. Despite our name, we handle MUCH more than just arthritis.

We do not specialize, however, in ALL autoimmune diseases. There are many other autoimmune diseases that are treated by other specialties such as Hashimoto’s/Grave’s thyroid disease, Multiple Sclerosis, and Myasthenia Gravis. For these disorders, we may refer you out to appropriate specialists or your primary care provider.

We will diagnose gout, osteoarthritis or mechanical pain caused by degenerative arthritis of the joints or spine, but these are not inflammatory arthritis/autoimmune diseases, and we are not pain management physicians. If we rule out inflammatory arthritis/autoimmune disease, we then may refer you out to appropriate specialists or your primary care provider.

Please make sure to fill out your new patient paperwork. We really do take the time to review them prior to your appointment. We cannot provide you with the best care without all the information that pertains to you and your health.

Please make sure to arrive early at least 30 minutes prior to your first and 15 minutes before your follow-up visit. Our physicians strive to stay on time and want to ensure all your paperwork is processed and you are roomed prior to the start of your scheduled appointment time.

If you need to cancel/reschedule an appointment, please do this at least 24 hrs. in advance of the appointment time, during Arthritis Consultants’ phone hours (8:30 AM – 3:30 PM Monday-Thursday and 8:30 AM – 3:30 PM on Friday) to avoid a No Show/Late Cancellation or Late Rescheduling charge.

We will most likely order bloodwork and imaging. It will take 10 days-two weeks to obtain complete results of the bloodwork. In most cases, you will be scheduled for a follow-up in 2-3 weeks to review all your results with one of our providers. You will have access to your results on our portal prior to your appointment.