My sister has had a problem in the past with red bumps on her finger joints which occasionally progresses to her elbows. Recently it has started appearing on her hip joints. She has already had the bumps cut off and had lab work done on them revealing nothing. Any ideas as to what it could be?
The first things that come to mind are rheumatologic problems such as rheumatoid arthritis but, there are inflammatory diseases that are less common and more difficult to diagnose. Unidentified surface manifestations may also be symptoms of internal problems in the bowel or immune system. Depending on your sister's age and general health condition, also consider what medications she takes and family history. It is important to see someone who can ask lots of the right questions in order to get the clues to the answer (an Internist would be a good place to start if not yet seen).
This type of problem generally requires a systematic and planned approach.
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