Arthritis Patient Care

Over 53 million US adults have arthritis–– that’s 1 in 5 adults in this country. So most health care providers (HCPs) will treat patients who have arthritis. Most patients do not see a rheumatologist for their arthritis. Instead, they may go to primary care providers, such as family practitioners, internists, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants. All HCPs can use this page as a resource for information about diagnosing, treating, and managing arthritis in their patients.

When Should I Refer Patients to a Rheumatologist?

A primary health care provider can often provide basic care for a patient with arthritis, especially osteoarthritis, but sometimes it is necessary to refer a patient to a rheumatologist.

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Clinical Practice Guidelines

When treating arthritis, it is important to know what treatment and management strategies are best practice. American College of Rheumatology has developed clinical practice guidelines for several types of arthritis.

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