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A woman holding the back of her neck

There are about 200 different musculoskeletal conditions. Arthritis is a term used by doctors to describe inflammation within a joint, while rheumatism is a more general term that's used to describe aches and pains in or around the joints. Because there are many possible causes of these pains doctors don't often use the term rheumatism and will usually refer to these problems either by a specific diagnosis or according to the part of the body affected. Doctors sometimes use the term 'musculoskeletal conditions' or 'the rheumatic diseases' to refer to a whole range of conditions that affect the joints. 

Browse by letter for your condition


  • A group of friends blowing bubbles outside


    Oligoarthritis is the most common type of juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) affecting about two-thirds of young people with arthritis.

  • Grandma and grandson reading a book


    Osteoarthritis is the most common form of joint disease. It causes joint pain and stiffness. We explain its causes, diagnosis and treatment, and the importance of self-help measures.

  • A man holding his knee

    Osteoarthritis of the knee

    The knee is one of the joints most commonly affected by osteoarthritis. In this section we explain a bit more about what causes it and how it’s diagnosed and treated.

  • Lauging mature ladies sat on a park bench in the winter sunshine


    Osteomalacia can cause bone pain and muscle weakness. It's often caused by lack of vitamin D. We explain a bit more about what causes it and how it’s diagnosed and treated.

  • Older lady weight training


    Osteoporosis is a condition that causes the bones to become fragile, so that they break more easily. We explain a bit more about what causes it and how it’s diagnosed and treated.


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