The rheumatic group of disorders represents over 200 different clinical entities. These diseases affect the musculoskeletal system, a system made up not only of joints but also of the tissues acting on, supporting or surrounding the joints. The three main components are (1) the synovium, which lines the joint and is responsible for its nutrition and for the secretion of joint fluid (which lubricates the joint and separates the joint surfaces), (2) the cartilage, which acts as a cushion between the joint surfaces, and (3) the tissues that act on the joint (i.e. the muscles, tendons and their sheaths), and the stabilizing mechanism of the joint, the ligaments and capsule. Any one of these tissues may be involved in the disease process, and, because there is considerable overlap in the function of the tissues involved, classification is difficult.
KeywordsCorticosteroid Osteoarthritis Psoriasis Proteinuria Acne
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