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The Child with a Swollen Joint course for GPs

Speciality Classification
General Practice ( GP ) / Family Medicine
Subject matter expert
eLearning for Healthcare
Endorsed By
RCGP, elfh, NHS

This session describes approaches to the assessment and management of children presenting with one or more swollen joints.

This session was reviewed by Khyati Bakhai and last updated in January 2022.

Learning objectives

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • distinguish the key features relating to a swollen joint in a child from the history, examination and patient narrative
  • discuss the differential diagnosis of an acutely swollen joint and a chronically swollen joint in a child
  • describe the role of a primary care practitioner in managing the child presenting with a swollen joint
  • describe the potential consequences of late diagnosis on the outcome for a child with a swollen joint, including the need for prompt action in conditions such as septic arthritis and juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA)

Joint swelling in childhood is not a common presentation in primary care. However, it has a number of potentially serious causes that should not be missed.

Instructors / Speakers
Helen Foster,
Professor of Paediatric Rheumatology, Newcastle University Medical School Malaysia

Helen Foster has been a Professor of Paediatric Rheumatology at Newcastle University since 2001 and moved to Newcastle University  Medicine, Malaysia in 2018. She is also an Honorary Consultant at Newcastle Hospitals NHS Trust. She trained initially in adult rheumatology and susequently paediatric rheumatology with a clinical fellowship in Vancouver, Canada.

Helens academic work, including research and teaching, has always maintained a strong clinical focus and aims to improve access to care for children with arthritis. Helen has numerous collaborations to explore barriers to care and educational strategies to facilitate early recognition of childhood arthritis. She is very involved with teaching at both undergraduate and postgraduate level and has developed articles and e-resources including the pGALS musculoskeletal screening examination, which is now widely taught at medical schools.

Helen is Chair of the Royal College for Paediatrics and Child Health Specialist Advisory Committee for rheumatology, including responsibility for postgraduate training in paediatric rheumatology, is a member of the British Society for Paediatric and Adolescent Rheumatology Executive and has contributed to the clinical guidelines and standards of care to promote high quality clinical services.

She is member of the UK (arc/MCRN) Paediatric Rheumatology Clinical Studies Group steering committee to develop the clinical research strategy within the speciality.

Sharmila Jandial,
Specialist Registrar, Paediatric Rheumatology, Newcastle Hospitals Trust, Newcastle Upon Tyne

Dr Sharmila Jandial is a Specialist Registrar in Paediatrics in the Northern Deanery and has interests within paediatric rheumatology and medical education.

Her current role is in educational research through a fellowship awarded by the Arthritis Research Campaign, which is tasked with improving clinical skills within paediatric musculoskeletal medicine.

Sharmila has contributed to a number of educational resources within paediatric musculoskeletal medicine at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. She is an elected member of the RCPCH Trainees Committee and the Northern Deanery Paediatric Postgraduate School Board.

The Child with a Swollen Joint course for GPs
Interest Areas / Topics Covered
Pain management
Provider Type
Education Provider
Access Duration (in months)
Modules this course belongs to
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