Preparing for your appointmentBy Mayo Clinic staff
While you may initially bring your concerns to your family doctor, he or she may refer you to a doctor who specializes in joint disorders (rheumatologist) or orthopedic surgery.
What you can do
You may want to write a list that includes:
- Detailed descriptions of your symptoms
- Information about medical problems you've had
- Information about the medical problems of your parents or siblings
- All the medications and dietary supplements you take
- Questions you want to ask the doctor
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor may ask some of the following questions:
- When did your joint pain begin?
- Is the pain continuous, or does it come and go?
- Do any particular activities make the pain better or worse?
- Have you ever injured this joint?
- Osteoarthritis. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Osteoarthritis/default.asp. Accessed Feb. 13, 2013.
- Goldman L, et al. Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/191371208-2/0/1492/0.html#. Accessed Feb. 13, 2013.
- AskMayoExpert. Osteoarthritis. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2012.
- Frontera WR, et al. Essentials of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation: Musculoskeletal Disorders, Pain, and Rehabilitation. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-6/0/1678/0.html. Accessed Feb. 13, 2013.
- Kalunian KC. Risk factors and possible causes of osteoarthritis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 13, 2013.
- Firestein GS, et al. Kelley's Textbook of Rheumatology. 9th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2013. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-6/0/1807/0.html. Accessed Feb. 13, 2013.
- Kalunian KC. Diagnosis and classification of osteoarthritis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 13, 2013.
- Total knee replacement. American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00389. Accessed Feb. 15, 2013.
- Lorig K, et al. The Arthritis Helpbook. 6th ed. Cambridge, Mass.: Da Capo Press; 2006.