As awareness of the “window of opportunity” in early rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is raised amongst general practitioners and members of the public, Rheumatologist are increasing seeing patients at earlier stages in the natural history of RA; in particular at the phase of clinically suspect arthralgia (CSA) where patients have inflammatory sounding musculoskeletal symptoms but without clinically apparent joint swelling. Managing such patients is challenging, with particular issues related to outcome prediction and treatment.
This talk will review the differential diagnosis of CSA with a focus on strategies that can be applied in a secondary care setting to predict future RA development including the role autoantibody testing and imaging. Potential treatment options will be discussed and ongoing research studies aimed at preventing progression to RA will be highlighted. The patient perspective in relation to the impact of their symptoms and their views about predictive testing will also be addressed.
Disclosure of Interest None declared