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From the College: Joint Surgery
Modern joint replacement surgery involves removal of worn cartilage from both sides of the joint, followed by resurfacing of the joint with a metal and plastic replacement implant that looks and functions much like a normal joint. Although nearly every joint in the body can be replaced, most replacement surgeries involve the hip or knee. Joint replacement surgery is typically recommended for patients who have tried non-surgical treatment but still have joint pain. While this is an extremely effective...
From the College: Consultation or Referral? That Is the Question
One of the most troublesome coding decisions is determining whether a visit is a consultation or a referral. To avoid the hassle of incorrect coding, one must first understand the difference between a consultation and a referral.
Outcomes measures are valuable tools for rheumatologists to assess the health status of patients with RA and they can improve clinical practice efficiency. However, deciding which measures to use - in addition to collecting and analyzing data - is a challenge. Fortunately, there are a number of strategies that can make the process worthwhile.
Departments: Reading Rheum
Pain in RA: Transdermal Fentanyl for Treating Pain in RA
From the College: Sex and Arthritis
Sexuality is an integral part of being human. It is linked to our quality of life and self-identity. Yet living with the pain, stiffness, fatigue, limited movement, decreased strength, and depression associated with arthritis can reduce a patient’s capacity for sexual expression and enjoyment.
From the College: Engage Patients as Partners in Shared Decision-making
Engaging patients in shared decision-making about their health management is increasingly important to improving health outcomes and quality of life for persons with arthritis and other rheumatic diseases. In shared decision-making, the patient and the provider are partners who share information and determine together the best therapeutic interventions to achieve desired health outcomes and patient goals.
Columns: Mayo and Grady CONNect
I was a staff physician-rheumatologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., for 25 years. For the last nine years I’ve been physician-rheumatologist at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, primarily at Grady Hospital. Mayo is a mecca for rheumatology, while Grady is a prototypic public hospital. The experiences at these institutions have been vastly different, yet one has allowed me to succeed in the other.
This philosophy is one that the vast majority of physicians have adhered to for years. Although patients can receive educational materials in a dramatically different ways now, printed materials remain the format of choice for most rheumatologists.
From the College: Wegener’s Granulomatosis
Wegener’s granulomatosis (WG) is a rare and complex blood-vessel disease affecting men and women equally. Although the cause of the disease is unknown, it can be treated and managed effectively.
Departments: Profiling Providers: Is Your Practice Ready?
Medicare may start profiling physicians as soon as mid 2008. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) recommended that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) develop a profiling system to identify physicians with inefficient practice patterns. At a House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health hearing, Herbert Kuhn, acting deputy administrator of the CMS, said that identifying inefficient physicians, or “profiling,” would involve comparing the number of tests ordered by a...