The Why Behind Rheumatology

Let’s talk about the “why” behind Rheumatology.⁠

👩🏽‍⚕️ Rheumatology is a branch of medicine devoted to the diagnosis and therapy of autoimmune diseases and musculoskeletal disorders.⁠

👩🏽‍⚕️ As a rheumatologist, I investigate for underlying conditions where chemicals/cytokines or proteins produced by the body called autoantibodies may attack the organs and joints leading to local and systemic inflammation. I also examine your joints, tendons, muscles, ligaments, and bone.⁠  The difficult part of my specialty is that a diagnosis is not always made on the initial visit or subsequent follow up visits because it sometimes takes time for an autoimmune disease to develop the clinical symptoms.  Each individual’s immune system is unique and that person reacts to different triggers such as viruses, medications, environmental pathogens in a different way.

Often in women, general symptoms of fatigue, muscle aches, and joint pain get dismissed and these women are told they have aging injuries, depression, viral illness, or other psychological conditions.

👩🏽‍⚕️ You should see a rheumatologist when: ⁠

🔹 There is prolonged joint swelling, pain or redness⁠

🔹 Reduced joint mobility ⁠

🔹 Muscle weakness or pain⁠

🔹Bone pain⁠

🔹 Tendon or ligament injury⁠

🔹 Prolonged unexplainable fatigue or “flu-like” symptoms ⁠

🔹 Abnormal lab test like ANA, RF, dsDNA⁠

🔹 Other systemic symptoms like rash, sun sensitivity, “brain fog”, oral and nasal ulcers, Raynaud symptoms, unexplained cardiac and pulmonary symptoms, dry eyes, eye redness, and dry mouth⁠

If you are suffering from diseases such as Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Osteoarthritis, Scleroderma, Sjogren’s syndrome, then you’re in the right place!⁠

I use this platform to continue to educate people on the causes, treatments, and symptoms of Rheumatology diseases. ⁠Women and minority populations are predominantly affected by these conditions and should be aware of complications and Comorbidities like heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis! ❤️🦴