If you have a condition affecting your joints, bones and muscles, our rheumatology service can help diagnose and treat you, helping you regain the ability to live your life normally.
We see patients with inflammatory and musculoskeletal diseases including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis and gout. We may also see you if you have a more complex autoimmune inflammatory disorder that may not necessarily cause joint pain, such as giant cell arthritis and other cases of vasculitis, or connective tissue diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus.
If you are an adolescent or young adult with arthritis we can treat you in dedicated clinics, and we will help when, as you get older, you move from paediatric rheumatology services to adult rheumatology services.
We like to see you as early as possible in your illness because we know that earlier treatment of inflammatory arthritis is the best way to minimise the risk of the illness progressing or causing complications.
Throughout your treatment you may be seen by a rheumatology consultant, rheumatology specialist nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapist or podiatrist, depending on who is most appropriate to deal with your specific problem.
You will be seen by a consultant in one of our outpatient clinics where the cause of the joint pain will be investigated. It may be necessary to have a blood test, x-ray or ultrasound.
Once a diagnosis has been reached, we are likely to recommend a package of therapies including (but not limited to) more effective pain killers, steroid injections into affected joints, disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs), physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and education. If you have foot problems you may be referred to the podiatrist.
If joints can’t be treated medically, we work closely with our orthopaedic surgeons to assess where surgery can help.
You may find it useful to join an education session which provides information to help you manage your condition, and our team will let you know about these.
Patients that have already been referred into our service can also contact our rheumatology advice lines: