Most disorders affecting skin and joints can be diagnosed by pattern recognition based on history and examination without resorting to complex investigations. It is important to determine the chronological sequence of disease manifestations, such as Raynaud’s phenomenon followed by puffy, stiff fingers in systemic sclerosis and the eruptions induced by drug treatment in rheumatoid arthritis. Note also the pattern of disease distribution, such as the combination of eruption, nail involvement and asymmetrical arthritis in psoriasis. Clinical examination is generally the best way of assessing the activity of disease and its response to treatment and it is the only way of evaluating the degree of functional impairment.
KeywordsRheumatoid Arthritis Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Systemic Sclerosis Rheumatic Fever Serum Uric Acid Level
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- Burton, J. L. (1985) Essentials of Dermatology. Churchill Livingstone, Edinburgh.Google Scholar
- Kelly, W. M., Harris, E. D., Ruddy, S. and Sledge C. B. (1989) Textbook of Rheumatology. W. B. Saunders, Philadelphia.Google Scholar
- Polly, H. F. and Hunder, G. G. (1978) Physical Examination of the Joints. W. B. Saunders, Philadelphia.Google Scholar
- Rook, A., Wilkinson, D. S., Ebling, F. J. G., Champion, R. H. and Burton, J. L. (1986) Textbook of Dermatology, 4th Edn., Blackwell, Oxford.Google Scholar