Patients & Visitors

Connective Tissue Diseases


What we offer

The CTD team provides a group education/self-management programme for patients with lupus and scleroderma where attendees meet with others with the same condition and learn the necessary coping skills. The education team includes a consultant CTD nurse, consultant rheumatologist and allied health professionals (physiotherapists, dieticians and occupational therapists) as well as a patient educator.

The aim of the programme is the promotion of better life management for patients with CTD. These programmes have been cited by the Commission for Health Improvement as an area that the rest of the NHS can learn from.

A patient group meets here on a regular basis, enabling patients, especially those with lupus, scleroderma and Sjögren's syndrome, to access appropriate support.

Our CTD service offers a multi-disciplinary approach to diagnosis, treatment and management.

  1. Dedicated clinics for patients with CTDs are consultant-led, ensuring patients have access to senior expertise and decision making
  2. Nurse specialist clinics offer education, medication counselling and clinical review
  3. We work with colleagues across a range of additional specialities to offer combined clinics including:

    • Rheumatology / Respiratory combined clinic
    • Rheumatology / Pulmonary Hypertension clinic
    • Rheumatology / Dermatology combined clinic
    • Rheumatology / Obstetrics combined clinic
  4. We hold formal monthly multi-disciplinary meetings, involving colleagues from Nephrology, Ophthalmology, Cardiology and Neurology to discuss complex cases
  5. We provide a weekly Consultant CTD ward round, where complex patients are reviewed by a consultant and the wider multi-disciplinary team either on our day unit or in the main hospital. Inpatients receive daily specialist review by the Rheumatology multi-disciplinary team
  6. We offer a rapid access giant cell arteritis (GCA) service, aiming to assess patients within 48 hours of referral and a dedicated clinic for follow up care after diagnosis
  7. We are a training hospital and have rotating registrars, clinical research fellows and visiting overseas fellows in rheumatology working within the clinical and research departments
  8. Our specialist therapy service supports both inpatients and outpatients
  9. We have a strong interest in research with patients participating in numerous local, national and international studies
  10. We form part of a national network of expertise for CTD. Consultants in our department are active members of the UK Scleroderma Study Group, the British Isles Lupus Assessment Group (BILAG) and the International Myositis Assessment and Clinical Studies Group

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