Does your child have inexplicable muscle and joint pain and fevers? They may have an autoimmune or a rheumatic condition, such as lupus or juvenile idiopathic arthritis. Pediatric rheumatology can provide a definitive diagnosis and explain potential treatment options aimed at alleviating the symptoms and underlying conditions.

Mississippi Center for Advanced Medicine is a pediatric specialty clinic serving children 19 and younger. Your child should not have to endure pain and suffering from performing everyday tasks. Our pediatric rheumatologists would be happy to meet with you and your child to achieve better health and pain-free living.

What Is Pediatric Rheumatology?

Pediatric rheumatologists specialize in diagnosing and treating rheumatic conditions in children. These conditions cause swelling and stiffness in muscles, bones, and joints and can become quite painful if unaddressed.

When to See a Pediatric Rheumatologist

We may refer you to a pediatric rheumatologist if your child experiences any of these symptoms:

  • Symptoms of juvenile arthritis
  • Prolonged fevers
  • Unexplained rashes or severe acne
  • Muscle weakness
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Red, sore eyes
  • Pericarditis and pleuritis (inflammation around the heart and lungs)
  • Anemia, low white blood cell count
  • Recurring mouth sores

To ease your mind, make an appointment for a consultation to discuss your child’s symptoms and what they might mean.

What Do We Diagnose and Treat?

We provide diagnosis and treatment for the following rheumatoid conditions:

  • Juvenile idiopathic arthritis: One or more joints (knees, elbows, etc.) become inflamed. The condition may last weeks or months and occurs in kids under age 16.
  • Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: The immune system attacks tissues in the body, causing inflammation and potentially damaging the joints, skin, brain, lungs, kidneys, or blood vessels.
  • Juvenile Dermatomyositis: Impacts the muscles and skin in children 5 to 14 years old.
  • Vasculitis: Blood vessel walls thicken, constricting blood flow and possibly leading to organ and tissue damage.
  • Raynaud’s phenomenon: Small blood vessels start to narrow when exposed to stress or cold temperatures. This causes your child’s toes and fingers to turn blue and may be very painful. It can also affect the lips, ears, and nose.
  • Growing pain: Growing pains typically occur between ages 3 and 12 years. Your child may complain that the pain in their left and right leg alternates. Massaging the leg after a busy day can help.
  • Joint hypermobility syndromes: Excessive joint flexibility and joint pain characterize this condition. However, some kids have extremely flexible joints without the pain.

Tests to Determine the Type and Severity of Inflammation

A blood test can be used to determine whether your child has a condition related to pediatric rheumatology, as follows:

  • Antinuclear antibody (ANA) test: Checks for excess antibodies.
  • Complete blood count (CBC): Tests for balanced levels of white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets.
  • Creatinine: Checks for kidney disease.
  • Rheumatoid factor test: Tests for rheumatoid arthritis.
  • White blood cell count: High levels may indicate inflammation.
  • HLA tissue typing: Identifies genetic markers indicating ankylosing spondylitis.
  • Joint aspiration (arthrocentesis): Checking joint fluid for bacteria, crystals, or viruses.
  • Muscle biopsy: Helps determine if your child has any conditions related to rheumatoid arthritis in the muscles.
  • Skin biopsy: May help diagnose lupus or psoriatic arthritis.
  • Urine test: Checks for proteins and blood cell levels indicating an issue related to rheumatology.
  • X-rays or other imaging tests can also help us properly diagnose your child’s health condition.

Pediatric Rheumatology Treatment for Your Child

The Mississippi Center for advanced medicine specializes in pediatric conditions. We have a robust pediatric rheumatology department that focuses on alleviating your child’s discomfort and treating underlying conditions. We will work closely with your current medical professional to help your child manage pain and inflammation. With the right treatment, they can get back to school, sports, and other essential activities they enjoy.

Mississippi Center for Advanced Medicine treats the conditions listed in this post and more. We are dedicated to the health and welfare of the kids and families we serve. Contact us to schedule a pediatric rheumatology consultation.