This is a category taken from the full feed of Musculoskeletal and Arthritis news provided by ARMA's members.


On 30th November 2017, the National Osteoporosis Society published new Osteoporosis Standards and Vertebral Fractures Guidance for Health Professionals. The guidelines help health professionals provide the possible care for people with osteoporosis.

Fizz Thompson, Clinical Director for the National Osteoporosis Society, said: “The National Osteoporosis Society plays a key role in driving positive change in healthcare provision for people affected by fractures and osteoporosis, and these new documents – developed with clinical experts over a two year period – demonstrate how the Charity is setting the agenda in this area.

“The new guidance will raise awareness of the clinical significance of fractures among all clinicians and managers, and highlights the importance of undertaking further investigation and starting treatment in a timely way.”

View the documents here on the NOS website.

On the 30th November 2017, the HMSA launched its ‘Giving GPs the Tools’ campaign! Click here to see the poster, full size.

With funding for UK healthcare held by GPs, a good relationship with your GP based on working in a partnership, is vital. They are the gateway to access any specialist services and interventions we may need. Yet time and time again, the HMSA hears about negative experiences. Positive management of the conditions the HMSA supports, needs to involve a well-informed GP working in partnership with their patient.

The vast majority of hypermobility spectrum disorders can, and should, be diagnosed by a GP. The diagnosis is not necessarily a complicated one and is fairly quick to do but too often GPs aren’t aware, or confident on this point. Some feel under-qualified to make such a diagnosis. Some GPs don’t even know that such a diagnosis exists. We can’t, realistically, expect GPs to know everything about everything but we can, and should, expect a GP to investigate potential diagnoses and at least research conditions of patients that they have on their lists. Especially, considering that the majority of hypermobility syndromes are genetic which could mean several generations are affected within one family. That is just good practice. A lot of GP practices have a GP with ‘an interest’ in musculoskeletal conditions. While this does not make them a ‘specialist’, it usually means that they have had a little extra training and does suggest that they maybe the best person to see people from our community. That is great if you can choose who you see in your practice. Many of us can’t; we have to see the GP whose list we are on, or happen to have an appointment available.

The diagnostic criteria for common hypermobility spectrum disorders can be found on our website

Once GPs do make that diagnosis, they often do not know how, or where, to start in the management of the varied systemic issues we can face. The HMSA supports this process by providing information and resources to all types of professionals, especially GPs and their patients. Increasingly, we are being contacted by GPs and other professionals for advice on management of the conditions that come under our umbrella, but we need to do more!

Just one of the HMSA’s aims throughout this campaign is to provide a resource section for GPs (and other health and medical professionals) on our website. This resource will enable GPs to find out exactly what they could be doing to meet the needs of their patients.

NRAS have partnered with Daman, a Danish digital Healthcare company, to bring you RheumaBuddy.

The aim of the app is to create an overview of your Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) on a daily basis by discovering patterns and ultimately gaining a greater control of the condition. As well as creating a great overview, RheumaBuddy allows you to log sleep, exercise and hours of work or school. It is also possible to chat with other patients and learn from their experiences.

It is available to download on both Android and Apple based mobile phones for FREE!
Visit the NRAS website to find out more and download the app.

The British Society for Rheumatology has launched the Inflammatory Arthritis toolkit in partnership with the Royal College for GPs and health professionals. Designed to facilitate earlier treatment for this condition, this toolkit aims to be a user-friendly guide to inflammatory arthritis for primary care professionals, people affected by arthritis and clinical commissioning groups.

The RCPG have also provided a summary here.

The RCN Rheumatology Forum would like to report that in September 2017 the 4th edition of the RCN Biologics guidance document for Rheumatology Practitioners went live: “Assessing, managing and monitoring Biologic therapies for Inflammatory Arthritis

It is available online now as a downloadable PDF via our link:

Strategy Day

On the 17th Nov 2017 the RCN Rheumatology Forum are planning to meet for a (self-funded) Strategy Day where future projects and final details of the forthcoming RCN Rheumatology Nursing Workshop will be discussed.

The RCN Rheumatology Nursing Workshop 2018

This best-practice event is to be held at the RCN HQ on the 12th January 2018, starting at 11am and finishing around 3pm.

Topics include:

  • patient fatigue
  • pain
  • leadership and resilience training
  • psychological impact of chronic disease
  • Biosimilars update and how they impact on practice
  • Rheumatology Specialist Nursing Competency frameworks.

This workshop has been developed and based on the results of a forum survey which asked you to identify issues relating to the management of rheumatological disease, interventions, treatment and support.

The aim of the workshop is to address these issue as well as developing the unmet need of clinical leadership skills and personal and professional resilience. This event will enable specialist nurses to continue to deliver excellent care, follow best practice and inspire colleagues despite continued NHS barriers and difficulties.

NHSE/ARMA Webinar Gains Traction on YouTube

The “Sport, Exercise and Musculoskeletal Training in the NHS” webinar has received almost 300 views on YouTube; please continue to share and promote this important resource which highlights physical inactivity as the largest public health problem of the 21st century and outlines how Exercise Medicine and Musculoskeletal Medicine, delivered within the NHS, can have a positive impact on public health. View the Webinar here.


FSEM (UK) Responds to Draft WHO Global Action Plan on Physical Activity

The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (UK) has responded to a recent consultation by the World Health Organisation on physical activity. The Faculty’s key points cover: the scale of action needed to address physical inactivity across the globe; coherence of policy on physical activity in the UK; consistency in teaching and supporting health professionals to talk to their patients about physical activity; and how the plan addresses hard-to-reach and vulnerable groups and giving physical activity in schools equal prominence to academic subjects. Read the Faculty’s full response here.


FSEM (UK) Responds to NICE Consultation Update on Physical Activity and the Environment

The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (UK) has made recommendations on the NICE guideline which covers how to improve the physical environment to encourage and support physical activity. Expected to be published in March 2018, the FSEM (UK) response supports; active travel and the creation of new cycle and footpaths, asks that all health professionals receive mandatory training on the benefits of physical activity and how to prescribe physical activity safely to their patients, including those with a disability, utilising the local resources available to them and recommends that every school child, from school entry to leaving, should have at least 30 minutes of structured physical activity during every school day.

Older People’s Day is celebrated on 1 October across the UK to coincide with the United Nations International Day of the Older Person (UNIDOP).

The Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Alliance is proud to join people across the world on Older People’s Day in celebrating the achievements and contributions that older people make to our society.

The CSP has assembled a page of Older People’s Day promotional material, presentations for healthcare professionals containing falls data and custom exercises for older people, and resources to help set up your own OPD event.

You can follow Older People’s Day on Twitter via @OlderPeoplesDay and #OlderPeoplesDay.

NASS are delighted to launch the second in their series of three videos explaining what Ankylosing Spondylitis is and how it affects people.

The animation ‘Ankylosing Spondylitis – Not just Back Pain’ describes how AS can affect other joints, tendons and ligaments, along with other areas including the eyes, bowels and skin.

We hope you find the video interesting.

Please do share it to raise awareness of how AS affects 200,000 people in the UK.