Inflammatory Arthritis is a serious and systemic disease that includes many subtypes. These diseases predominantly affect the joints, but can also involve other parts of the body including the heart, lungs, eyes and skin. Rheumatoid arthritis is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis, affecting an estimated 2 million people in the United States. However, there are many different kinds of inflammatory arthritis that affect millions more individuals every year.
Most forms of inflammatory arthritis are progressive, and if left untreated, will result in serious damage to the joints, pain, and disability. However, rheumatologists (the physicians who specialize in the care of people with inflammatory arthritis) have more treatments available than ever before to help those diagnosed cope with symptoms and maintain their quality of life. Itís important for those who have been diagnosed to know that a growing body of research shows that treatment is most effective when it begins early in the course of the disease.
The rheumatologists and other staff at the Inflammatory Arthritis Center at the Hospital for Special Surgery use a combination of non-surgical techniques--including medications to relieve swelling and pain - while regulating the immune symptom. For many people with inflammatory arthritis, these treatments successfully control symptoms, and slow or even halt the progress of their disease. Surgical options may be appropriate in certain situations where severe joint damage has occurred.
The Inflammatory Arthritis Clinic assesses and treats patients affected with inflammatory arthritis. The IAC includes health providers dedicated to the care and improved understanding of these disorders. Over 60 patients are treated at this weekly clinic, where they benefit from the highest quality care provided by a multidisciplinary team that includes expert attending physicians who oversee fellows, residents and students as well as social workers, a radiologist, and scientists. Patients seen in the clinic can be participants in inflammatory arthritis registries; help with scientific studies; and physician education.
These free programs reflect our comprehensive approach to care for people with rheumatoid arthritis.
HSS offers a number of free programs that reflect our comprehensive approach to care for people with lupus, myositis and rheumatoid arthritis.