Connective Tissue Disorders

Availability

North South North West Statewide

Pre-referral work-up

History

Possible diagnoses include SLE, Scleroderma, Myositis, Sjogren's Syndrome

All referrals should comply to referral standards and include in particular:

  • History:
    • Onset
    • Pattern of symptoms eg proximal weakness
    • Arthralgia
    • Rash or oedema
    • Sicca symptoms
    • Raynauds
    • Pregnancy history
    • History of thromboses
    • Functional capacity
    • Social history
  • Examination findings:
    • Blood pressure
    • Joint swelling/deformity
    • Functional capacity

Refer diagnosed Scleroderma to Scleroderma clinic

Tests

  • FBE
  • ESR, and CRP
  • U&E, eGFr
  • LFTs
  • C3/C4
  • ANA/ENA/ dsDNA binding
  • CK (raised in myositis)
  • Urinalysis/MSU and urinary ACR

Interim/GP management

To refer a patient with this condition, please see the Rheumatology clinic page for the full referral process and templates.

Discussion with Rheumatologist may be of benefit in interim management if simple analgesia and local treatments are ineffective.

For more information please see the Tasmanian Health Pathways website.

Urgent / category 1

Acutely ill with systemic symptoms eg renal impairment, dyspnoea, rapidly progressive loss of mobility

Acute thrombosis

Semi-urgent / category 2

Significant symptoms and laboratory findings

Routine / category 3

Borderline laboratory findings and minor symptoms

Red flags are clinical indicators of possible serious underlying conditions requiring further medical intervention. They may or may not indicate an emergency.

Patient information advice is found at Arthritis Australia

Emergency:

Proceed to Emergency Department (ED). Please contact ED Medical Officer in Charge:
LGH ED
– Phone: (03) 6777 6405  Fax: (03) 6777 5201
MCH ED
– Phone: (03) 6478 5120  Fax: (03) 6441 5923
NWRH ED
– Phone: (03) 6493 6340  Fax: (03) 6464 1926
RHH ED
– Phone: (03) 6166 6100  Fax: (03) 6173 0489

Urgent:

Please discuss with registrar or consultant. We will endeavour to see these patients within four weeks.

Urgent referrals (e.g. temporal arteritis, septic arthritis) should be accompanied by a phone call to the Rheumatology Registrar or Consultant for urgent assessment, or patient should be directed to the Emergency Department.

Semi-urgent:

We will endeavour to see these patients within 12 weeks

Routine:

Next available appointment