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Pediatric Arthritis

Arthritis in children and teens is called juvenile arthritis. The most common type of juvenile arthritis is juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). 
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JIA is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks healthy cells for an unknown reason. JIA is defined as swelling in one or more joints that lasts at least six weeks without another explanation. All types of juvenile arthritis can produce symptoms of swelling, stiffness, loss of range of motion, pain with range of motion, and warmth in the joints. Some arthritis conditions also feature problems with the eyes or skin.

Our Approach

At the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital, our pediatric rheumatologists collaborate with other pediatric medical specialists, such as ophthalmologists, dermatologists, and orthopaedists, to offer a range of treatments tailored especially to your child’s needs.

JIA develops in children under age 16. Your child’s physician will diagnose JIA based on medical history and physical exam. The physician may also perform additional tests, such as blood tests and X-rays, to characterize it and rule out other conditions. JIA is a chronic condition that has no cure, but under the care of skilled University of Minnesota specialists, the symptoms can be managed to help your child live a more normal life.

Coping with a chronic condition such as JIA can cause stress for everyone in your family. Our behavioral health experts are available to work with you to help everyone learn to cope in a healthy way.

Treatments, Tests, and Procedures

Casting, Bracing, and Splinting

Injuries to bones often require immobilization through a cast, brace, or splint. Other reasons include genetic disorders, such as scoliosis, as well as surgeriews where an intervention is required in order for the affected area to heal properly.
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Pediatric Counseling

Healthy development for children and adolescents includes physical as well as emotional well being. Our behavioral health programs include counseling services, evaluations and testing, development assessments, and behavior management skills.
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Pediatric Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapists work with children and their families to promote participation in functional activities or occupations that are meaningful to them, including self-care, motor skills, and play skills. Occupational therapy also can help when issues of self-regulation/adaptive behavior.
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There may be other treatments, test, and procedures for this diagnosis, including:

  • Oral Medications
  • Injectable Medications

Call your preferred location to schedule an appointment or submit an online request.