Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Alliance
This is a category taken from the full feed of Musculoskeletal and Arthritis news provided by ARMA's members.
  • The Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Alliance (ARMA) is the umbrella body for the arthritis and musculoskeletal community in the UK, and our mission is to transform the quality of life of people with musculoskeletal conditions. We have 40 member organisations ranging from specialised support groups for rare diseases to major research charities and national professional bodies.

ARMA Networks

Launch Event at Horizon Leeds, 3rd Floor, 2 Brewery Wharf, Leeds, LS10 1JR

23 October 2018, 9.30am – 4.30pm

The Northern Musculoskeletal Collaborative Programme (#MSKnorth) is a regional approach to transformation in elective MSK care.

  • Do you want to improve musculoskeletal services?
  • Do you know what the priorities and opportunities are to improve musculoskeletal care?

The programme launch will be opened by Professor Peter Kay, National Clinical Director for MSK and will feature frontline clinicians who are leading change and transforming MSK services.

To learn more about the size of the MSK challenge and to hear about the potential solutions, reserve your free place via the event page on NHS England website.

 

The spring edition of the Portsmouth Hospitals’ Department of Rheumatology newsletter is out.

It contains dates and details of a number of upcoming events, groups and meetings, including:

  • Funky Knit Day, a knitting event to raise awareness of Raynauds, 07 Feb 2018 – see the poster
  • Portsmouth Cream Tea & Light Music event, 4 March 2018 – see the poster
  • Portsmouth Easter Tea Dance, 24 March 2018 – see the poster

For more, open and save the spring newsletter (in PDF) here.

The next joint meeting of the ARMA / Haywood User Group is on Friday, 16 February at 1pm in the Seminar room at the Haywood Hospital, Tunstall, Stoke on Trent. Refreshments are available from 12.30pm.

Geoff Lawton, chair of the ARMA Network for Stoke on Trent, is currently involved in a consultation process regarding the design process for the local health services. This consultation looks at the local provision of community beds, which involves the Discharge to Access (D2A) model. We are discussing with our CCGs the provision of care available when patients are discharged from hospital.

The timely, effective and responsive assessment and management of patients using the Patient Advice and Information Lines (PAIL) leads to improved quality of care and patient experience.

Whilst a number of the Patient Advice and Information Line calls are related to clinical concerns, patients, family and carers often talk about other life events that may impact on their treatment and management plan. Clinical Nurse Specialists and Members of the Rheumatology Multidisciplinary team need to be responsive with a wealth of knowledge and experience; they must also be imaginative with a bit of Health Service/ Community Care “common sense” to support these patients through these life events.

Colin Beevor, Matron from Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust has used data from previous PAIL calls to develop the “Rheumatoid Arthritis – Game of Life” board game to equip all Clinical Nurse Specialists and members of the team necessary knowledge and skills to manage patients over the telephone.

In this fast-changing era of medicine, the board game offers the opportunity to increase knowledge and stimulate discussion and learning within teams.

Colin Beevor: “The board game has been developed with Lilly UK and was launched at the 2017 Nurse RESPONSE Forum in London on the 23rd December 2017. I had a lot of fun working through the scenarios, which act as practice development tools for those working with people living with Rheumatoid Arthritis. The game also has potential to be further utilised in the education of patients, family and carers and the wider community of primary care team members.”

Alison Kent, Chairperson at the Response Conference: “The community of Clinical Nurse Specialists and members of the multidisciplinary team are very skilled at managing patients, but often there are life events that mean we need to rethink patient management plans. During the three workshops at the conferences the board games were well received by the delegates, and many asked if the board game could be taken back to their own department as a teaching aid.”

Jenny Kynes, Head of Nursing, Musculoskeletal Service Centre, Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust: “We are always looking at new ways of providing nurses with education; whilst there may be insufficient evidence in the literature to either confirm or refute the use of such learning, it looks like the board game was received well by the delegates and achieved its main aims, at bringing fun, to increase knowledge and to stimulate discussion around supporting patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis.”

“Back to Back”
Back pain in Rheumatology
Friday 20th April 2018
Venue: Village Hotel, Lakeshore Drive, Portsmouth PO6 3FR

Join the Portsmouth Department of Rheumatology for the “Back to Back” Conference, where local and national experts will discuss the latest developments in rheumatological disorders with an emphasis on the use of radiological imaging to support diagnosis and management, in line with current best practice for Inflammatory Back Pain and Vertebral Fractures.
The conference is open to radiographers, nurse specialists and members of the multidisciplinary team involved in the management of patients with inflammatory back pain and vertebral fractures.

For more details, see the conference programme and delegate application form.

Flare Roller Coaster for People Living with Arthritis and Connective Tissue Diseases

The Next Rheumatology Flare Roller Coaster workshop will be held on Saturday 3rd February 2018, from 09:30 -13:00.
Venue: Fracture Clinic – C Level, Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham PO6 3LY

Places are limited so please register early.

To book your place or receive more information, email: rheumatology.conference@porthosp.nhs.uk or telephone 02392286935

For frequently asked questions about our Flare Rollercoaster workshop, please see our leaflet [PDF].

If you have arthritis or a connective tissue disease, the festive period can be tough. For starters, the months of December and January come at the coldest time of year, which can cause more problems, and although cold weather doesn’t cause arthritis or connective tissue diseases, it may increase joint pain and possible flares.

Colin Beevor, Matron: “Sometimes flare-ups can’t be avoided, no matter how hard you try. If you start to feel increased pain or joint stiffness, take action.”

There are many self-management treatments that can help reduce joint pain:-

  • Hot/warm packs and even warm baths can soothe painful joints and relieve stiffness;
  • Ice packs can relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and cool down joints during flare-ups. Remember: do not apply heat or ice packs directly to the skin or for more than 20 minutes at a time;
  • Topical cream or gel that contains the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug NSAID. Ask your local pharmacist before using a topical treatment that contains NSAIDs particularly if you already take over-the-counter or prescription NSAID tablets.
  • TENS Machines – Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation machine administers mild electrical currents through the skin to the nerve fibers which can help to block or suppress pain messages.

 

Keeping Active

Although arthritis and connective tissue diseases and exercise may not seem like a natural match, staying active can definitely help your joint pain.

Getting out in the fresh air has proven benefits to your health, from strengthening your muscles to improving your blood pressure and helping with a good night’s sleep, spending time in the open is good for your health.

Swimming is a form of exercise suitable for all age groups. Even if you are not a strong swimmer or have non-swimmers in your family it is a great way of spending time together and getting fit whilst doing it. Swimming is a great low-impact activity that helps burn calories, strengthen muscle mass, and improve cardiac endurance.  The water allows your body to exercise without impacting too much on the joints; this makes it an ideal exercise for those with stiff joints, sore muscles. If you find going to the swimming pool very cold, a tip is to wrap your towel and clothing in a hot water bottle.

Fourteen patients and their partners and staff from the Department of Rheumatology are about to complete their 6-week ballroom class. Over the weeks they will have taken an additional 12,000 steps and exercised for around extra 5.5 hours.

Claire Jeffries, Rheumatology Specialist, Physiotherapist and Hydrotherapy Manager, points out that there are many health benefits of dancing: “it’s great for people of all ages, shapes and sizes”.

Dancing offers a wide range of physical and mental benefits:

  • improved condition of your heart and lungs
  • increased muscular tone, strength, endurance and motor fitness
  • increased aerobic fitness
  • weight management
  • stronger bones and reduced risk of osteoporosis
  • better coordination, balance, agility and flexibility
  • increased physical confidence
  • improved mental functioning and psychological wellbeing
  • greater self-confidence and self-esteem

The Department of Rheumatology would encourage people living with Arthritis and connective tissue diseases to consider dance as a form of activity. To get started simply choose a style you enjoy, or would like to try, look for dance schools in your local area and join a class.

Colin Beevor, Matron, said: “There are many forms of dance, from ballroom to barn dancing and disco to Morris dancing. Ballroom dancing has been great for our dancing patient group; it’s been such an enjoyable way to be more physically active and help with overall fitness for people living with arthritis. We are so grateful for the support from P. Peskett from the PP Dancing Club; she had made it fun to get more active!”

See a photo of the PortsHosp ballroom dance group.

Remember: you can dance in a group, with a partner, or on your own. There are lots of different places where you can enjoy dancing, for example, at dance schools, social venues, community halls and in your own home. Dancing has become such a popular way to be active and keep fit that most fitness clubs now offer dance classes in their group exercise programs.

Join us for our fundraising tea dance on Saturday 9th December 2017 at St Colman’s Church hall, Cosham from 3:00-5:00pm.
Tickets are available at £5 from margaret.fletcher@porthosp.nhs.uk.

Our next dance class will be Scottish Dancing. Join us for classes starting on Wednesday 14th February 2018 for 6 weeks at the Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham. Anyone who has ever been to Scottish country dancing knows just how much fun a Dashing White Sergeant can be. It is likely, too, that anyone who has attempted the Gay Gordons or Strip-the-willow also knows the physical effort needed for a full night of traditional Scottish dancing.

A fun-packed day for all

On Sunday 22nd October 2017, the Department of Rheumatology staff hosted more than fifteen tables for children’s games and crafts – f rom Dominos, colouring to ghostly table lights, and homemade first aid kits – whilst Dads and Mums living with arthritis and connective tissues attended a number of short presentations aimed at providing help and advice:

  • Strategies for coping with a diagnosis and moving forward
  • How to manage family life work and arthritis and connective tissue diseases
  • Incorporating the benefits for staying active and eating healthily

The DaM-it Arthritis project is funded through the Department of Rheumatology’s charitable funds and non-conditional educational grants, offering free events to support the community of Dads and Mums affected by Arthritis and Connective Tissue Diseases and their families.

We recognise that social and emotional peer support is as essential as medical care for people living with these long-term conditions.

The Department of Rheumatology at the Portsmouth Hospital NHS Trust aims to understand the needs of this group and will be hosting a variety of family-centred events in 2018, combining fun and games with an understanding of the conditions and the impact it has on the family. We aim to offer a variety of workshops, classes, groups and activities in a non-residential, home-like setting.

Read the DaM-it-Arthritis info-sheet here.

Jenny Kynes, Head of Nursing, MSK Services, said: “Dads and Mums affected by Arthritis and Connective Tissues diseases need a place where others understand what they are going through. I am so pleased to see and hear about the work of the Rheumatology Department where the Dads and Mums get the opportunity to discuss and question healthcare professionals about subjects important to them.

Alex Fletcher, DAWN coordinator, said: “I was humbled and amazed at listening to the dads and mums’ stories. It gave me a true understanding, in-depth, of the impact living with arthritis and connective tissue diseases has on their lives and the lives of their partners and children. Until then, I only knew of their names from updating the information systems, so meeting them was revealing, touching and often heartwarming. It reminds us to think of a person, not just a condition, and ask what matters most to them?”

The next joint meeting of the Haywood User Group / ARMA Stoke is on Dec 1st 2017 at the Haywood Hospital, in the lecture room at 1pm.

Refreshments are available from 12:30pm.

All patients, carers, staff and interested parties are welcome.

Haywood Hospital,
High Lane,
Burslem,
Stoke on Trent
ST6 7AG

Arthritis and Connective Tissue Disease flares are normal but do have an impact on every aspect of your life. In simple terms a flare can be described as “a sudden increased severity in symptoms that can hit at any time”.

For many patients having a flare is disheartening, they feel that they have been managing their arthritis/connective tissue disease well and doing all the right things by taking their medication regularly and maintaining a healthy balance of exercise and activity, then one day they wake up and feel like it was all for nothing. For many the symptoms can be mild and for others the symptoms of joint pain, stiffness and swelling and fatigue are the worst that they can remember in a long time.

It’s important to remember arthritis and connective tissue diseases even when on effective treatments can have acute periods of time with pain, inflammation and fatigue – this is known as flares. Thankfully for many these troublesome and unpredictable, flares are short lived, unfortunately for a few the flares may continue for a few days or even weeks.

There may be many causes of flares such as

  • After bacterial and virus infection
  • After Surgery- when you may have been off your Disease Modifying Anti Rheumatic or Biologics Drugs
  • Periods of high stress
  • Overdoing it at work or at home

Unfortunately for many it is not often clear what triggers a flare.

Colin Beevor, Matron, says: “Flares can be alarming, not only because of the pain, but because of their unpredictability, patients are often fearful that the flare will spiral out of control and how the flare is disrupting their work family and own quality of life. We are therefore pleased to announce a new “Flare Rollercoaster” patient, family and carer workshop, the programme is open to anyone with inflammatory arthritis (Ankylosing Spondylitis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriatic Arthritis and Connective Tissue Diseases (Lupus, Sjogrens, Scleroderma, Vasculitis and Myositis”

The Department of Rheumatology is pleased to announce the first “Flare Rollercoaster” workshop:

Saturday 2nd December 2017
Registration 09:15am
start 09:30am
finish 1:00pm

During the 3½ hr session you will cover/learn about –

  • Possible causes of a flare-up
  • Being prepared for flares at work, rest and play
  • Self-Management of a flare – first steps – Learning how to manage your flare, by developing your own flare management tool kit
  • What to do if a flare doesn’t settle – next steps

There is also an opportunity to meet others living with arthritis and connective tissue diseases and to share experiences and self-management strategies.

Open the workshop flyer here.

To register to attend, write to –
Rheumatology Conferences/Education Programmes
Rheumatology Department
Queen Alexandra Hospital
Southwick Hill Road Cosham,
Portsmouth PO6 3LY

Telephone 02392286142

Email: Rheumatology.conference@porthosp.nhs.uk

Matron and Service Manager
MSK Outpatient Services
Colin.beevor@porthosp.nhs.co.uk

Department or Rheumatology, C Level, Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham PO6 3LY
0239229 6142 – Secretary Valerie Robins

ARMA Stoke would like to let you know they are having their 3rd meeting of the year for the ARMA/Haywood user group.
This will be on Friday 15th September at 1pm in the lecture room at the Haywood Hospital, Burslem, Stoke -on-Trent.

Refreshments will be available from 12:30pm.

Presentations on the day include Brighter Futures (Mental Health), Osteoarthritis Day for patients, the Blue Iris Project and other updates from the hospital.

 

The North Wales ARMA Network has set advance details of its meetings for next year.

A map and directions are provided for meetings to be held on :-

• Tuesday 23th January 16:30 – 18:30 hours
• Tuesday 17th April 16:30 – 18:30 hours
• Tuesday 3th July 16:30 – 18:30 hours
• Tuesday 16th October 16:30 – 18:30 hours

Download full details in pdf format.