Rheumatology Services

We provide a patient centered multidisciplinary service. We aim to control the inflammatory process, relieve pain, maintain joint function and health related quality of life. We offer general rheumatology services as well as specialist services for people with osteoporosis, connective tissue diseases, ankylosing spondylitis and transition clinic .

  • Outpatient clinics are held at Southmead Hospital Bristol,Cossham Hospital and Yate.
  • In general rheumatology clinics we see a wide range of inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, gout, polymyalgia rheumatica and vasculitis.
  • Patients with inflammatory arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis, make up the majority of patients under continuing care.
  • We have a 6-bedded fully equipped day case unit for administration of intravenous medication such as biologics and zoledronate.
  • Inpatient care is provided at Southmead Hospital Bristol.

Rheumatology specialist nurses:

  • Provide education about the disease process, medication, coping, pain management, employment issues and injection technique.
  • Run the advice helpline which provides advice, support and information for patients in between hospital visits. When the nurse is in clinic or unavailable there is an answering machine. This number should not be used for emergency calls.

Rheumatology physiotherapists provide:

  • Specialist group classes for people with ankylosing spondylitis, osteoporosis and other inflammatory conditions, as well as tailor-made one-to-one physiotherapy treatments.
  • Information and advice about your condition, teaching you what symptoms to expect and how to manage them.
  • Guide you how to recognise and manage a flare, when to rest and when to exercise, and how to modify activities to protect your joints.  
  • Teach you safe stretching and strengthening exercises, to increase movement and strength and maintain function.
  • A rheumatology gym and a hydrotherapy pool at Level 1, Southmead Hospital Bristol.

Occupational therapists offer:

  • Advice and aids to enable you to participate fully in everyday life activities.
  • Group and one-to-one patient education sessions in self-management skills like joint protection, pacing, energy conservation, and relaxation.
  • A specialist splinting service for patients with upper limb problems.

Clinical psychologist helps with:

  • Coping skills and pacing.
  • Exploring different ways to cope with pain.
  • Relaxation techniques to help calm and control your body and mind.
  • Promoting well-being and personal development.
  • Emotional issues and adjustment to living with arthritis.
  • One-to-one sessions and group sessions
  • Runs the Living Well with Arthritis programme.

Orthotics team

  • Specialises in the use of devices (orthoses/insoles) to support weakened joints, correct deformities, alleviate pain and maintain mobility.
  • Foot and gait assessment.
  • Advise regarding footwear and insoles.
  • Apply and manufacture devices which support or correct foot function.