If you deal with the pain and inflammation from arthritis and other rheumatology conditions, you are not alone. As many as one in four Americans suffer from arthritic conditions including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Autoimmune disorders and other conditions can cause inflammation in your joints, tendons, ligaments, muscles and bones, causing pain and limiting how you live your life.

Inflammation, or swelling, happens when your body’s immune system attacks healthy tissue for some reason. Genetics sometimes plays a role, but it can also be caused by the environment, hormones or infections.

The pain from inflammation can be so severe and long-lasting that it impacts the way you move, sleep and function. You may get tired easily and often can’t do things you used to enjoy, such as spending time with friends or participating in certain activities.

The rheumatologists at The Christ Hospital Health Network are skilled at diagnosing complex rheumatic diseases. We understand how pain can limit your mobility and keep you from living your best life possible. Our goal is to improve your symptoms and get you moving again.

In addition to offering the most advanced rheumatology treatments available, we partner with other specialists as needed – including orthopedic surgeons, immunologists and rehabilitation therapists – to give you complete care.

In most cases, a physician’s referral is required. Just find a rheumatologist near you and make an appointment today.

When is it time to see a rheumatologist? 

Rheumatic diseases respond best when treated in the early stages. That’s why it’s important to recognize the symptoms and see a rheumatologist as soon as possible. Signs of inflammation include ongoing or severe: 

  • Aches and pain

  • Fatigue (tiredness)

  • Hard lumps or bumps near joints

  • Joint redness or warmth

  • Reduced range of motion

  • Stiffness

  • Swelling

  • Weakness

Rheumatic conditions we treat 

According to the American College of Rheumatology, an estimated 50 million Americans suffer from a rheumatic condition – and there are more than 100 different conditions known today.

At The Christ Hospital Health Network, we treat the full spectrum of arthritis and rheumatic disease. Some of these include:

  • Arthritis – chronic (ongoing) condition that causes pain, redness and swelling in the joints and connective tissue in people of all ages.  

  • Bursitis – inflammation of a closed, fluid-filled sac (bursa) found between tissues near the large joints, usually the shoulders, elbows, hips and knees.

  • Gout – deposits of uric acid crystals build up in the joints, often triggered by consuming rich foods, alcohol, seafood or stress or chronic medical conditions like high blood pressure.

  • Lupus – condition that affects the joints, tendons, skin, blood vessels and other organs, including the brain, heart, lungs and kidneys.

  • Osteoarthritis – a type of arthritis that involves the gradual breakdown of cartilage in the joints and can cause bone spurs and affect movement.

  • Polymyalgia rheumatica – sudden onset of aching and stiffness, most commonly affecting the neck, shoulders and hips and occurring in the morning or after long periods of inactivity. 

  • Polymyositis – inflamed or irritated muscles that can lead to weakness and muscle loss and impact walking, lifting, breathing and eating.

  • Psoriatic arthritis – a type of arthritis linked to psoriasis (a chronic skin and nail disease) and can affect the hands, fingers, feet, toes, lower back and spine.

  • Rheumatoid arthritis – a type of arthritis that can become severe and cause lumps or nodules near the joints, hand deformities and lung or heart damage.

  • Rheumatoid vasculitis – inflammation of the blood vessels which causes blockages that can lead to muscle weakness, tissue death, loss of feeling and fatal heart problems.

  • Scleroderma – disease that causes abnormal connective tissue growth that can affect the joints, skin and internal organs, and worsens overtime.

  • Sjogren syndrome – keeps the glands from making enough moisture, affecting the mucus membranes and other organs and body systems including the joints, kidneys and the vascular system.

  • Tendonitis – inflammation of a tendon (cord that connects the muscles and bones), or the lining of the tendon, commonly found in the shoulders, fingers and thumbs. 

Treatments we offer

Treating rheumatic disease requires a dedicated team and personalized care. Our rheumatologists consult with different medical specialties to create a plan tailored to your unique needs.

We work to reduce pain and improve your mobility and function for a more active lifestyle.

Some of the treatments and services we offer include:

  • Lifestyle changes – such as increasing physical activity, reducing weight or learning relaxation techniques.

  • Medications – oral and topical medicines including corticosteroids, pain relievers, antirheumatic drugs and anti-inflammatories.

  • Physical therapy and rehabilitation – special exercises led by physical and occupational therapists to help build strength and improve movement and function.

  • Injections – delivers medicines, such as corticosteroid injections or anti-inflammatories directly to the joint, tendon or muscle using a needle. 

  • Infusion therapy – gradually delivers medicines, such as corticosteroids, antirheumatic drugs and other therapies through an IV (intravenously).

  • Surgery – if needed, our team can refer you to an orthopedic surgeon within our network for tendon repair, joint replacement or fusion. 

Why choose The Christ Hospital Health Network 

At The Christ Hospital Health Network, you get expert care from a team you can trust. We offer: