If you have joint pain and think it could be arthritis, you can also wonder what class of doctor you should go to.
Should you pass to an orthopaedist or a rheumatologist or some other expert?
Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic clinical center. Advertising on our site helps aid our mission. We do not propose non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy
The most average type of arthritis is osteoarthritis, and for that the region to start is with your fundamental care physician.
“If you have aching joints with sport or walking and it’s persisting, it’s likely osteoarthritis, says orthopaedist Michael Star, MD.
Here Dr. Star explains what a number of varieties of doctors can do to treat arthritis:
Primary care physician – A basic care physician can handle osteoarthritis with common treatments, like anti-inflammatory pain medications and referral to a physical therapist. The physician will probably order X-rays. “That’s customarily all that is needed,” Dr. Star says. An MRI isn’t necessary.
If the physician suspects there might be a few other cause of joint problems but even so osteoarthritis, a rheumatologist will be consulted. If your symptoms don’t improve or get worse, your doctor can even send you to an orthopaedist or a rheumatologist for more excessive medical control or an orthopaedic physician for surgery.
Orthopaedists – Orthopaedists are doctors who treat injuries and diseases of the musculoskeletal system, adding osteoarthritis. For arthritis that gets worse in spite of remedy, they can carry out injections of corticosteroids (powerful anti inflammatory drugs) or hyaluronic acid (a substance that lubricates joints).
For excessive arthritis that reasons gigantic pain and heavily limits day by means of day life, an orthopaedic surgeon can perform surgery, such as joint replacement.
Rheumatologists – Rheumatologists specialize in musculoskeletal diseases and autoimmune conditions. They treat all types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis.
If there’s a probability you have something other than osteoarthritis, you will be sent to a rheumatologist. They supply cure for joint diseases, adding prescribing medications and giving injections. They do now not perform surgery.
Other experts – Sometimes the specialist you see will be dictated through the vicinity of the problem. Some scientific centers have specialized spine centers. This also can be the place to go to be treated for osteoarthritis of the backbone.
Most doctors, regardless of their specialty, will doubtless send individuals with osteoarthritis to a physical therapist. “That is the cure that’s shown to have the best benefit,” Dr. Star says.
This article first seemed in Cleveland Clinic Arthritis Advisor.