Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis - When To Call a Doctor
Call your doctor immediately if:
- Your child has sudden, unexplained swelling, redness, and pain in any joint or joints.
- A baby or child is unusually cranky or reluctant to crawl or walk.
- Red eyes, eye pain, and blurring or loss of vision occur in a child who has been diagnosed with any form of juvenile arthritis.
Call your doctor if any of the following symptoms continue for more than 2 days:
- A child has unexplained daily fever spikes [103°F (39.4°C) to 106°F (41.1°C)] with or without a pink skin rash.
- A baby or child is reluctant to crawl or walk in the early morning but improves after 1 to 2 hours.
- A child taking aspirin or another nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) develops stomach pain not clearly related to stomach flu, but possibly related to medicine use. (Symptoms may include heartburn, nausea, or refusal to eat.)
- Joint pain and skin rash develop following a sore throat.
It can be hard to know when an infant has joint pain. A young child may be unusually cranky or may revert to crawling after he or she has started walking. You may notice gait problems with a walking child or stiffness in the morning.
Who to see
For a first check of joint pain and other symptoms of juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), consult with a:
For more testing and disease management, consult with a rheumatologist who specializes in children's rheumatic disease (pediatric rheumatologist).
The disease management team for JIA may also include:
- An orthopedic surgeon who specializes in children's orthopedic problems (pediatric orthopedist).
- Physical and occupational therapists.
- A registered dietitian, as needed.
- A social worker or psychologist, as needed.
- A general dentist and an orthodontist, as needed.
- An ophthalmologist.
To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Making the Most of Your Appointment.