There are over 100 different types of arthritis. Symptoms and treatment will vary depending on which type you have. So, it is very important to make sure you get the right diagnosis. Your general practitioner (GP) will be able to help.
It is important to see your doctor as soon as possible if you have symptoms of arthritis. It may take several visits before your doctor can tell what type of arthritis you have. This is because some types of arthritis can be hard to diagnose and may need further testing or examination.
Firstly, your doctor will ask you about your symptoms and family history. They may examine the affected joints and send you for some tests
or x-rays. Your
doctor may also send you to a rheumatologist (a doctor who specialises in arthritis) for more tests.
Before you go to the doctor, it can be helpful to write down your symptoms and any patterns that you have noticed.
These questions can help you prepare to see your doctor:
Keeping a ‘pain diary’ can be a really helpful way tosee any patterns in your symptoms so you can better inform your doctor. In a
pain diary, you record things that might impact on your level of pain. You rate your pain on a scale of 0 – 10, and then rate your
sleep, mood and level of physical activity as well. It is ideal to do this a few times a day, so you can really get a sense of any