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עמוד בית
Sat, 20.07.24

Original Articles

IMAJ | volume 16

Journal 1, January 2014
pages: 33-36

Rheumatological On-Spot Consultations in a Multilevel Geriatric Hospital

    Summary

    Background: Musculoskeletal and joint disorders are extremely common in the elderly. They directly affect mobility, gait stability, quality of life, and independence.

    Objectives: To assess the nature of joint problems encountered in a geriatric inpatient population and evaluate the contribution of a rheumatologist.

    Methods: We reviewed the rheumatology consultations that were conducted in a geriatric medical center over a 10 year period.

    Results: A total of 474 consultations were held; most of these patients (86%) were hospitalized in the acute geriatric departments, 10% in the rehabilitation ward and 4% in the long-term care wards. Some patients were seen more than once. The rheumatologic joint problem was the main reason for hospitalization in 53% of these patients. Monoarthritis was the most frequent complaint (50%), followed by pauci-articular arthritis (two to five joints) in 30% of patients. Arthrocentesis, diagnostic and therapeutic, was performed in 225 patients, most of them on knee joints (81%). The most frequent diagnosis was osteoarthritis with acute exacerbation (28%), followed by gout (18%), pseudo-gout (9%) and rheumatoid arthritis (9%). In 86 cases (18%) the diagnosis was a non-specific rheumatologic problem: arthralgia, non-specific generalized pain, or fibromyalgia.

    Conclusions: Prompt and appropriate evaluation, as well as arthrocentesis and treatment initiation, including local injections, were made possible by the presence of an in-house rheumatologist. 

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