Diagnosis And Treatment Of Polymyalgia Rheumatica


This is a disorder that causes pain and stiffness in the muscles, especially your shoulders and hips. The symptoms and signs of polymyalgia rheumatica will usually start quickly and get worse in the mornings. People who develop this condition tend to be older than 65, and usually never younger than 50.

This condition is related to giant cell arteritis, which is another inflammatory condition. The giant cell arteritis is known to cause difficulties with vision, headaches, and tenderness in the scalp and jaw pain. It is possible to have both of these conditions together, and the best way to learn more about them is to talk to your doctor. Visit the best rheumatologist in Brisbane from arthritisCARE or search locally.

Polymyalgia rheumatica can cause a lot of pain

Know the symptoms

It is important that you know the symptoms, so you know what to look out for. The signs and symptoms of this condition will happen on both sides of your body, in most cases. You could start experiencing:

  • Pain or aches in the neck, buttocks, hips, things or upper arms.
  • Pain and aches in the shoulders.
  • Stiffness in the areas that are affected, especially in the mornings.
  • A limited range of motion.
  • Stiffness and pain in the wrists, knees or elbows.

The diagnosis

A proper physical examination is necessary for a proper diagnosis. This includes a joint and neurological exam, as those test results can help your doctor determine the cause of the stiffness and pain. During the examination, your doctor will gently move your limbs and head, to see the range of motion.

Your doctor will also monitor any signs of giant cell arteritis. So, if you experience the following, make sure that you properly talk to your doctor!

  • Unusual, new and persistent headaches.
  • Double or blurred vision.
  • Tenderness of the scalp.
  • Pain and tenderness in the jaw.


In most cases, polymyalgia rheumatica is treated with certain medications that are designed to help you with the severity of your symptoms. Even if your symptoms disappear over time, most people will relapse, which is why it is important that you have a regular doctor. You could check out the polymyalgia rheumatica specialist in Brisbane at arthritisCARE or visit a local doctor.

The treatment that your doctor will recommend usually depends on the symptoms that you are experiencing. A low dose of oral corticosteroid, together with Vitamin D and calcium, and methotrexate might be recommended. As soon as you start experiencing symptoms, make sure to talk to your doctor!

Talk to your doctor if you start experiencing symptoms

Final word

People who take corticosteroids tend to return full function eventually. However, there is also a chance that this might not happen, in which case you will have to go through physical therapy. If you want to know more about this condition, you should simply schedule a consultation and have a serious and open talk with your doctor.