The development of digital technology has fundamentally altered (and in some cases decimated) the record industry, newsprint media, retail, publishing and advertising industries. Huge fortunes have been made and large institutions have crumbled with the march of technology. Those of who need convincing that medicine will be immune to these forces of change in these areas had better read Dr. Eric Topol’s book ‘The Creative Destruction of Medicine’.

Dr. Ronan Kavanagh, a rheumatologist, gives a quick overview or the drug Methotrexate.

As we are on the verge of moving over to an online appointment booking system and extending the use of texting to patients in our practice, we recently undertook a  survey of our patients. Over the last week, patients in our practice have been patiently completing questionnaires regarding their use of mobile phones, texting and …Read the Rest

Woody Allen’s 1970 movie ‘Sleeper’ introduced its audience to a fictional, futuristic device called the Orgasmatron. This remarkeable invention was capable of inducing physiological changes (of a pleasurable kind) in those placed within it. I sometimes wonder how much Woody Allen’s contraption was influenced by a device with a similar name from the early 1960’s …Read the Rest

One of the realities of Ireland’s fall from economic grace is the large numbers of people emigrating from our shores in search of a better life. I know this because amongst them are some of my younger patients in my practice, many of whom are afflicted with conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and ankylosing …Read the Rest

To most medical students and patients uninitiated in the science of rheumatology, the diagnostic process whereby rheumatologists assess patients may seem bewildering. When considering any patient who presents with joint pain, there are over 100 types of arthritis to consider, lots of conditions which mimic arthritis, a huge array of blood tests to consider and …Read the Rest

I have collated this list of rheumatologists who blog regularly from around the world. Please let me know in the comments section if I’ve missed anyone and I’ll add them. Apologies to you if you’re one of them. I’m on the list too but then you know that because you’re on my blog reading this….. …Read the Rest

Every year I make a pilgrimage to the ‘Virgin Megastore’ of my chosen specialty, The American College of Rheumatology Annual Scientific Meeting. The meeting, which is the worlds’ biggest rheumatology meeting is held over 5 days and attracts almost 16,000 delegates. The volume of research presented at this single meeting is simply staggering. This year there were over …Read the Rest

Although as a medical student rheumatology was always associated with an air of mystery and complexity to me – factors which might have aroused a younger me had they been associated with a member of the opposite sex – the specialty didn’t catch my eye at all as an undergraduate. To a medical student cruising …Read the Rest

When I was training as rheumatologist in the 1990’s, it would have been fairly common for a rheumatologist to offer reassurance to a newly diagnosed patient with Osteoarthritis (OA) by telling them how lucky they were not to have rheumatoid arthritis. At that time rheumatologists weren’t terribly good at effectively treating Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or …Read the Rest