Rheumatology is devoted to the diagnosis and therapy of immune-mediated disorders of the musculoskeletal system, soft tissues, autoimmune diseases, vasculitides, and inherited connective tissue disorders. Rheumatic diseases can affect the joints, muscles, and bones causing pain, swelling, stiffness, and deformity.
In Spain, almost one in four people suffers from one of the 200 rheumatic disorders, such as gout, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, osteoarthritis of the spine or hip, or the lesser known Sjögren’s syndrome. As a result, rheumatic health issues are amongst the most common reasons why patients see a doctor.
Hospital Ochoa Marbella offers personalised medical care for rheumatology patients. This includes a wide range of state-of-the-art diagnostic and therapeutic procedures for the study and treatment of the following:
- Inflammatory rheumatic diseases: rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, etc.
- Autoimmune diseases: systemic lupus erythematosus, Sjögren’s syndrome, scleroderma and other connective tissue disorders.
- Ankylosing spondylitis and other spondyloarthropathies.
- Crystal arthropathies such as gout.
- Locomotor system diseases of non-traumatic origin.
Symptoms and Treatment
The most common symptoms reported by rheumatology patients are joint pains (hands, cervical and lumbar area). Other symptoms include swelling, lack of mobility and joint deformity.
The field of rheumatology covers joint diseases, connective tissue diseases, soft tissue rheumatisms and bone metabolism diseases. Many of these health issues are chronic, thus requiring long-term treatment.
- Cortisone injections. These help relieve pain and reduce inflammation in specific areas of the body. They are typically placed in the tendons and joints: hip, knee, shoulder, elbow, wrist, and even the spine. The treatment consists of a corticosteroid and local anesthesia, and only a limited number can be applied per year. It is recommended for rhizarthrosis (trapeziometacarpal osteoarthritis) that appears due to a degenerative alteration of the thumb’s joint.
- Joint aspiration (arthrocentesis). This technique is very effective in relieving joint effusions, which are nothing more than an excessive accumulation of fluid (either blood or synovial fluid) in the joint. Joint aspiration is typically conducted on the shoulders, knees and ankles, as well as on ganglion cysts in the hands.
- Hyaluronic acid injection. This achieves great results in relieving osteoarthritis in joints such as the knees, where synovial fluid can lose density and lubricating capacity. Hyaluronic acid injections will offer substantial relief to patients who suffer from severe discomfort or pain.
Musculoskeletal ultrasound. This state-of-the-art type of ultrasound explores tendons, bone surfaces, muscles, ligaments, cartilage and bursae. It allows for a more exact evaluation of potential disorders, as well as a more accurate treatment.