Table 2:

Clinical content and question type for faxed referrals and eConsults

VariableFaxed referrals, no. (%)
n = 300
eConsults, no. (%)
n = 300
Clinical content
Abnormal serology without joint symptoms8 (2.7)27 (9.0)
Bursitis1 (0.3)0 (0.0)
Connective tissue disease9 (3.0)3 (1.0)
Crystal arthropathy — pseudogout2 (0.7)1 (0.3)
Crystal arthropathy — gout4 (1.3)15 (5.0)
Elevated creatine kinase1 (0.3)7 (2.3)
Fibromyalgia8 (2.7)3 (1.0)
Inflammatory monoarthritis5 (1.7)12 (4.0)
Inflammatory polyarthritis30 (10.0)18 (6.0)
Osteoarthritis13 (4.3)9 (3.0)
Osteoporosis28 (9.3)51 (17.0)
Paget disease of bone1 (0.3)3 (1.0)
Pain — back4 (1.3)11 (3.7)
Pain — multiple joints28 (9.3)21 (7.0)
Pain — not otherwise specified3 (1.0)2 (0.7)
Pain — single joint1 (0.3)4 (1.3)
Polymyalgia rheumatica12 (4.0)19 (6.3)
Raynaud disease4 (1.3)9 (3.0)
Rheumatoid arthritis32 (10.7)17 (5.7)
Scleroderma5 (1.7)0 (0.0)
Sjögren syndrome7 (2.3)4 (1.3)
Systemic lupus erythematous24 (8.0)10 (3.3)
Vasculitis12 (4.0)7 (2.3)
Other38 (12.7)40 (13.3)
No specific diagnosis given9 (3.0)0 (0.0)
Question type
Diagnosis75 (25.0)72 (24.0)
Drug related25 (8.3)67 (22.3)
Procedure6 (2.0)3 (1.0)
Management61 (20.3)58 (19.3)
Epidemiology0 (0.0)1 (0.3)
Nonclinical or administrative2 (0.7)0 (0.0)
More than 1 specific question15 (5.0)99 (33.0)
No specific question116 (38.7)0 (0.0)