Chronic musculoskeletal conditions such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are the single biggest cause of the rising burden of disability in England. These long term conditions have a huge negative impact on individuals including on employment, well-being, day to day function, mobility and pain.
There are about 200 different musculoskeletal conditions, which fall into five main groups
Degenerative arthritis including osteoarthritis
Soft tissue pain
And connective tissue diseases or CTD
There are approximately 350,000 people aged 16 years or older with rheumatoid arthritis in England.
An Arthritis Research UK report estimates that the number of people with osteoarthritis in England is around 7.3 million.
A common misconception is that little can be done for people with chronic musculoskeletal conditions, but this is not true. As a pharmacist you can support people with these conditions to live well and deal with their condition. Use the resources on this page to learn how to prevent disability by supporting your patients to aim for a healthy weight, increase physical activity and use medicines effectively.
NICE Osteoarthritis: care and management clinical guideline
This short questionnaire that allows people with musculoskeletal conditions (such as arthritis or back pain) to report their symptoms and quality of life in a standardised way.
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