to diagnose and treat the various types of diseases affecting the musculoskeletal system, which may include rheumatoid arthritis, gout, lupus, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and fibromyalgia, among others. Dr. Short is trained to provide a wide range of treatments, including the prescription of medications.
Rheumatology is a medical specialty focused on the non-surgical treatment of arthritis and rheumatic disorders. Rheumatologists diagnose and treat disorders of the joints, soft tissue and connective tissue, as well as autoimmune and rheumatic diseases. Autoimmune diseases are those affecting the immune system’s reaction to the body’s own tissues – for example, the immune system may attack the body’s healthy tissues by mistake. Rheumatic diseases are those affecting the muscles or joints, typically caused by swelling or inflammation.
The most common rheumatic disorders treated by rheumatologists include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, infectious arthritis, fibromyalgia, tendonitis, sclerodoma and reactive arthritis, among others. Autoimmune disorders treated by rheumatologists include vasculitis, Sjogren’s syndrome and lupus, among many others.
When treating patients for these and other diseases, rheumatologists provide a wide range of treatment options. Rheumatologists may prescribe physical therapy, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), corticosteroids, immunosuppressive medications or assistive devices (braces, splints, canes, etc.), among others. Rheumatologists may also speak with their patients regarding their diet, as it may affect their condition; exercise is also helpful in the management of rheumatic and related disorders. If therapy, exercise or medications are not effective, rheumatologists may refer the patient to a surgeon when appropriate.