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For more information, go to www.arthritisresearchuk.org

Kim's history

Kim's history
Location of pain?  Hands and knees 
Onset?  The pain came on over the last month and has been so bad that she has had to stop work as a teaching assistant.
Stiffness? Morning stiffness lasting two hours, feels like an old woman, difficult getting downstairs, better after warm shower 
Swelling?  Hands and knees swell up 
Other symptoms? Fatigue and poor sleep due to pain

Kim tells you she's been using ibuprofen and paracetamol. They've been of some help but not much, and she hasn't used anything else. She hasn't previously consulted a health professional about this problem.

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Taking a patient history

Lady holding sore neck

A detailed history provides important clues when deciding whether musculoskeletal pain has an inflammatory cause.

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