Every year, July is observed as “Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month” in the United States. The 2018 campaign is dedicated to raising awareness about the early signs and symptoms of Juvenile arthritis and to increase focus on the resources available for the millions of children who get affected by this disease. Often, there is a misconception that arthritis or joint inflammation affects only older adults. But Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), (formerly known as juvenile rheumatoid arthritis) is one of the most common types of arthritis affecting children under the age of 16. Sponsored by the Arthritis Foundation, this event aims to empower our kids, teens, young adults and their families through support, education and forging connections. Arthritis in children is treatable and most children with this disease can expect to live normal lives. Pediatric rheumatologists who treat children use medications and suggest different exercise patterns which help relieve symptoms such as pain, swelling and stiffness. Correct and timely treatment for JIA helps in reducing or controlling the progression of symptoms. For accurate clinical documentation of this rheumatic condition, physicians can opt for medical billing outsourcing services.

Juvenile Arthritis

Generally, there are six different types of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) which are – oligoarthritis, polyarthritis, systemic JIA, Psoriatic JIA, Enthesitis-related JIA and undifferentiated arthritis (which does not which does not fit within any other subtypes). According to reports from the Arthritis Research Foundation, an estimated 300,000 children in the United States, that is – 1 in every 1000 – develops some type of chronic arthritis. Some forms of juvenile idiopathic arthritis are more common in girls. Several serious complications such as eye problems and growth problems can result from juvenile idiopathic arthritis. However, keeping a careful watch on your child’s condition and seeking appropriate medical attention can greatly reduce the risk of these complications.

Juvenile arthritis is an autoimmune disease, which means that the body attacks its own healthy cells and tissues. The signs and symptoms associated with this condition can vary depending on the type of JIA and may include – persistent joint pain, swelling and stiffness, fever, fatigue or irritability, eye redness, blurred vision, limping (younger children may not be able to perform motor activities that they recently learned), weight loss and swollen lymph nodes and rash.

The month-long campaign aims to alert people about the top causes of JIA and evaluate the preventive steps that can be taken to control this condition. The exact cause of this rheumatic condition is unknown. A combination of genetics, certain infections and environmental factors may trigger the disease.

Diagnosing Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) can be difficult, as joint pain (one of the primary symptoms) can be caused by different types of problems. No single test can confirm a diagnosis of JIA. However, a combination of other tests such as blood tests (Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), C-reactive protein, Rheumatoid factor, Anti-nuclear antibody, Cyclic citrullinated peptide (CCP), and imaging tests like X-rays or MRI can help rule out other conditions that generate similar signs and symptoms. The diagnosis, screening tests and other procedures performed by pediatric rheumatologists or other rheumatology specialists must be carefully documented using the correct medical codes. Medical billing and coding services provided by reputable companies can help physicians use the correct codes for their medical billing purposes.

ICD-10 codes used for JIA include –

M08 – Juvenile arthritis
M08.0 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis

  • M08.00 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, of unspecified site

M08.01 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, shoulder

  • M08.011 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, right shoulder
  • M08.012 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, left shoulder
  • M08.019 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, unspecified shoulder

M08.02 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis of elbow

  • M08.021 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, right elbow
  • M08.022 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, left elbow
  • M08.029 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, unspecified elbow

M08.03 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, wrist

  • M08.031 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, right wrist
  • M08.032 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, left wrist
  • M08.039 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, unspecified wrist

M08.04 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, hand

  • M08.041 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, right hand
  • M08.042 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, left hand
  • M08.049 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, unspecified hand

M08.05 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, hip

  • M08.051 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, right hip
  • M08.052 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, left hip
  • M08.059 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, unspecified hip

M08.06 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, knee

  • M08.061 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, right knee
  • M08.062 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, left knee
  • M08.069 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, unspecified knee

M08.07 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, ankle and foot

  • M08.071 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, right ankle and foot
  • M08.072 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, left ankle and foot
  • M08.079 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, unspecified ankle and foot

M08.08 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, vertebrae
M08.09 – Unspecified juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sites

As part of the campaign, the Arthritis Foundation reaches out to families fighting JIA to provide them with adequate resources and help them connect with other families. Healthcare centers, health organizations and top medical experts will join hands to organize or conduct comprehensive programs/camps wherein children can meet and learn from their heroes who suffered this rheumatic disorder. People can also join this movement by sharing the story about their struggle with juvenile arthritis. You can also spread the word online via popular social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter with the hash tag #StrongerThanJA.

Join “Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month” campaign in July. Spread awareness about this pediatric rheumatic disease and how it can be correctly diagnosed, treated and prevented.