A pediatric rheumatologist is a medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of rheumatic diseases and musculoskeletal conditions in children, including infants, toddlers, children, and adolescents. These conditions may include juvenile idiopathic arthritis, lupus, dermatomyositis, and vasculitis.
Pediatric rheumatologists have specialized training in pediatric medicine, rheumatology, and immunology. They use a range of diagnostic tests such as blood tests, imaging studies, and joint aspirations to diagnose and evaluate the extent of the rheumatic disease.
Pediatric rheumatologists work with a team of healthcare professionals, including pediatricians, nurses, and physical therapists, to develop a comprehensive treatment plan. Treatment may include medications, physical therapy, and other interventions, depending on the specific condition and the child’s age and overall health.
In addition to treating patients, pediatric rheumatologists may also conduct research to improve the understanding and treatment of rheumatic diseases in children. They may also educate patients and their families about the importance of early diagnosis and treatment for rheumatic diseases.
To become a pediatric rheumatologist, one must complete a medical degree, a residency in pediatrics, and a fellowship in pediatric rheumatology. Certification by the American Board of Pediatrics is also required.