Rheumatic diseases : report of a WHO scientific group [meeting held in Geneva from 26 to 30 June 1989]
Other TitlesMaladies rhumatismales : rapport d' un groupe scientifique de l' OMS [réuni à Genàve du 26 au 30 juin 1989]
Enfermedades reumáticas : informe de un grupo científico de la OMS [se reunió en Ginebra del 26 al 30 de junio de 1989]
AbstractSummarizes what is known about the epidemiology, causes, clinical features, management and prognosis of ten rheumatic diseases selected because of their public health importance. In view of the complexity of these diseases, the book makes a special effort to define the areas where clear conclusions can be reached and to point out the lines of research most likely to yield improved tools for detection, treatment, and prevention. While noting significant recent advances in the areas of genetics, immunology, pharmacology, and connective tissue biochemistry, the report emphasizes the urgent need for more data on the epidemiology of these diseases and on the role of risk factors, whether of genetic origin or related to lifestyle and behaviour. The opening section alerts readers to changing patterns of morbidity and mortality, in both developed and developing countries, linked to such trends as increasing life expectancy, rapid growth of urban populations, and changes in lifestyle and behaviour. In the industrialized world, these diseases are noted to be responsible for more pain and disability than any other group of conditions. A section devoted to educational programmes stresses the need to correct a number of popular assumptions held by both the general public and health professionals. Because treatment of these multisystem diseases is often fragmented among many specialists, the report stresses the need to train physicians to recognize early symptoms of disease, be aware of advances in treatment and rehabilitation, and advise patients about avoidable factors that may aggravate or precipitate disease. Concerning education of the general public, the report notes that recent advances in treatment and rehabilitation call for revision of the generally pessimistic attitudes about these diseases. Other sections discuss the socioeconomic impact of rheumatic diseases and summarize what is known about the involvement of genetic factors. The main part of the report consists of separate sections devoted to rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, systemic sclerosis, Sjgren syndrome, Lyme disease, the spondyloarthropathies, low back pain, osteoarthritis, soft-tissue rheumatism, and gout. For each disease or syndrome, the report assesses current data on prevalence, causes, pathophysiology, clinical features, methods of detection, treatment, and prognosis. Observations range from the need to establish national registries for Lyme disease, through the reasons why radiographs cannot detect pathological changes in osteoarthritis, to the simple fact that very few patients with low back pain have a valid, scientifically proven diagnosis. Each section concludes with an assessment of deficiencies in current knowledge and a detailed list of areas where further research is needed
WHO Scientific Group on Rheumatic Diseases & World Health Organization. (1992). Rheumatic diseases : report of a WHO scientific group [meeting held in Geneva from 26 to 30 June 1989]. Geneva : World Health Organization. http://www.who.int/iris/handle/10665/37080
WHO technical report series ; 816
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