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J Rheumatol. 1990 Jun;17(6):827-30.

Analysis of a pediatric rheumatology clinic population.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada.


This analysis evaluates the role of a pediatric rheumatology clinic in assessing children with suspected rheumatic diseases and establishes relative disease frequencies in a clinic population. The study population comprised 875 children referred to a pediatric rheumatology clinic serving a population of 290,000 children. The mean annual referral rate was 113 patients. A diagnosis was established in 580 (66%) of whom 337 (58%) had a rheumatic disease. Of those with a rheumatic disease 156 (46%) had juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, 104 (31%) a spondyloarthropathy, 62 (18%) a connective tissue/collagen vascular disorder and 15 (5%) a variety of other conditions. Of the 243 diagnosed as having a nonrheumatic disease 79 (33%) had a mechanical or traumatic cause for musculoskeletal symptoms, 33 (14%) had an infection, 15 (6%) a neoplastic disorder and 71 (29%) a variety of other disorders. In addition, 45 children (19%) were evaluated because of family histories of rheumatic diseases or questionably abnormal symptoms or signs; after evaluation all these children were considered to be normal. The remaining group comprised 295 subjects (34%) for whom a definite diagnosis has not been made. In addition to diagnosing and caring for children with rheumatic disorders a pediatric rheumatology clinic serves to identify nonrheumatic conditions and provides information concerning relative frequencies and epidemiologic characteristics of childhood rheumatic diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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