Rheumatoid Arthritis affects nearly 2.5 million Americans and can lead to significant joint damage, disability, co-morbidity, and even premature death. Research has conclusively shown that delays in diagnosis or therapy can lead to hazardous outcomes. Early, aggressive therapy with the goal of inducing remission has a favorable effect on outcomes. These findings have led us to establish an Early Arthritis referral Clinic (EAC). The purpose of the clinic is to initiate a rapid evaluation, provide a timely and accurate diagnosis, and implement an effective therapeutic plan. This clinic is modeled after other successful programs across the US and Europe (Cush & Kavanaugh, 1995, Professional Communications, Inc.) and follows the guidelines published by Emery et al.
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