While you might first discuss your symptoms with your family doctor, he or she may refer you to a doctor who specializes in the treatment of joint problems (rheumatologist) for further evaluation.
What you can do
Before your appointment, make a list that includes:
- Detailed descriptions of your symptoms
- Information about medical problems you've had in the past
- Information about the medical problems of your parents or siblings
- All the medications and dietary supplements you take
- Questions you want to ask the doctor
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor may ask some of the following questions:
July 15, 2014
- When did your symptoms start?
- Does activity make the pain better or worse?
- What joints are painful?
- Do you have a family history of joint pain?
- Questions and answers about arthritis and rheumatic diseases. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Arthritis/arthritis_rheumatic_qa.asp. Accessed May 16, 2014.
- Venables PJW, et al. Clinical features of rheumatoid arthritis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 18, 2014.
- Mobasheri A. The future of osteoarthritis therapeutics: Targeted pharmacological therapy. Current Rheumatology Reports. 2013;15:364.
- Loeser RF. Aging processes and the development of osteoarthritis. Current Opinion in Rheumatology. 2013;25:108.
- Osteoarthritis. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Osteoarthritis/default.asp. Accessed May 16, 2014.
- Kalunian KC. Initial pharmacologic therapy of osteoarthritis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 18, 2014.
- Osteoarthritis. American College of Rheumatology. http://www.rheumatology.org/Practice/Clinical/Patients/Diseases_And_Conditions/Osteoarthritis/, Accessed May 16, 2014.