Rheumatology is a sub-specialty of internal medicine and paediatrics. It involves diagnosis and therapy of rheumatic diseases. Clinicians who specialize in rheumatology are called rheumatologists.
Rheumatism is a painful disorder affecting the loco-motor system, including joints, muscles, connective tissues, soft tissues around the joints and bones. The term rheumatism is also used to describe rheumatic fever affecting heart valves. Rheumatological disorders involve Rheumatoid Arthritis, Ankylosing Spondylitis, Gout and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.
Rheumatologists deal with clinical problems involving joints, soft tissues, autoimmune diseases, vasculitis, osteoporosis and heritable connective tissue disorders.
There are more than 200 types of rheumatoid diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, gout, lupus, back pain, osteoporosis and tendonitis. This specialty is interrelated with physiotherapy, physical medicine and rehabilitation of disabled patients.
Diseases diagnosed or managed by the Rheumatologists include: