On the Importance of Early Arthritis Centers

HSS Journal


Stephen A. Paget, MD, FACP, FACR

Physician-in-Chief Emeritus, Hospital for Special Surgery

Stephen J. DiMartino, MD, PhD
Assistant Attending Physician
Hospital for Special Surgery/New York Presbyterian Hospital
Instructor of Clinical Medicine
Weill Medical College of Cornell University

Excerpt
There are over one hundred different types of arthritis. However, even in the information age, many patients with joint pain are unaware that more than one type (or maybe a few) exists. As a result, many patients who believe that they have a benign form of arthritis will, instead, be suffering with a systemic inflammatory disease such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or psoriatic arthritis (PsA), diseases that, if not treated properly, can cause irreparable joint destruction and disability. It is now clear that to achieve the best possible outcome, patients with inflammatory arthritis must be identified and treated early in their course. Because primary care physicians and orthopedic surgeons are stationed at the first and second lines in the evaluation of most patients with joint pain, they are central players in not only identifying patients who potentially have early inflammatory arthritis but also in triaging them to rheumatologists or, more recently, to specific centers the focus of which is rapid diagnosis and intervention.

This article appears in HSS Journal: Volume 1, Number 1.
View the full article at springerlink.com.


About the HSS Journal
HSS Journal, an academic peer-reviewed journal, is published twice a year, February and September, and features articles by internal faculty and HSS alumni that present current research and clinical work in the field of musculoskeletal medicine performed at HSS, including research articles, surgical procedures, and case reports.


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