And Other Forms of Inflammatory Arthritis
Duke’s arthritis experts offer aggressive care for rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory forms of arthritis. Our experienced rheumatologists and immunologists collaborate with other Duke specialists to manage your painful, stiff joints, and help you return to the activities you enjoy.
Comprehensive Care for Rheumatoid Arthritis
As one of the nation’s top-ranked rheumatology centers, we offer complete evaluation and the latest treatments for all types of inflammatory arthritis -- including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis. These types of arthritis are different from osteoarthritis, a chronic condition that results from a combination of age, trauma, and/or overuse of your joints. You’ll find the right treatments for osteoarthritis on the knee, hip, ankle, shoulder and elbow pages.
Inflammatory arthritis occurs when the immune system attacks the joints in the body. Our doctors are also scientists who are committed to better understanding the causes of debilitating inflammatory arthritis. They constantly evaluate new medications that may be available to you through clinical trials. We strive to restore your quality of life using the best therapies available.
Choose Duke for your arthritis treatment because we offer:
- Arthritis rehabilitation. Learn to manage your arthritis in group sessions led by physical therapists who guide you through exercises and aquatic activities designed to improve mobility, strength and balance. We also provide educational sessions about arthritis and perform assessments to determine what types of assistive equipment, including walking aids and other devices, will help you perform everyday tasks and remain as independent as possible.
- Leaders in research. Our specialists are helping to identify the best treatments for inflammatory and autoimmune diseases through ongoing studies aimed at better understanding the causes of these disorders. You may be eligible to participate in clinical trials that are testing new therapies before they become widely available.
- A team approach to care. Our rheumatologists and immunologists collaborate with other Duke specialists, including psychiatrists, orthopaedic surgeons, dermatologists and lung experts, to develop a personalized treatment plan for you. Your primary care doctor is a key member of this team. We strive to provide coordinated care to deliver the best results for you.
- Nationally ranked program. Our rheumatology program is ranked among the best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.
This disease-modifying antirheumatic drug is commonly used to treat arthritis and rheumatic conditions. It relieves your symptoms and slows disease progression. Your doctor will monitor you closely while on this medication.
Also known as biologic response modifiers, this group of medications targets specific areas in the immune system to reduce the inflammatory effects of rheumatoid arthritis. These drugs require close management by your doctor.
Workouts may include aquatic exercise, biking, walking or stretching to relieve pain and preserve mobility.
We strive to diagnose your condition at its earliest stage to ensure the best outcome. Along with a review of your medical history and a comprehensive physical exam, your evaluation may include:
Check for anemia and rheumatoid factors such as antibodies or blood proteins.
X-rays, MRI or ultrasound may be used to confirm you have arthritis or to assess joint damage.