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Arthritis, Autoimmune Diseases

University of Iowa Children’s Hospital is home to Iowa’s only pediatric rheumatologists—doctors with the training, expertise, and experience to treat children and young adults with rheumatic diseases.

Rheumatic diseases refer to a wide range of disorders that, in general, affect the joints, muscles, spine, and skin. These diseases may present with pain, swelling, morning stiffness, fever, or rash. Pediatric rheumatic diseases result from uncontrolled inflammation, during which the body’s immune system attacks or hurts its own healthy cells and tissues. Examples include:

  • Juvenile idiopathic arthritis
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus (commonly known as lupus or SLE)
  • Scleroderma (“hard skin”)
  • Dermatomyositis (muscle inflammation)
  • Vasculitis (inflammation of blood vessels)
  • Autoinflammatory syndromes, including periodic fever syndromes and chronic non-infectious osteomyelitis (bone infection)

Our doctors, nurses, and medical staff understand that pediatric rheumatic diseases are chronic, complex disorders that can severely affect a child’s growth, development, and quality of life. Early and proper diagnosis is key to treating symptoms and managing the disease.

Trust—from our young patients and their parents—is important. We work with our families’ referring pediatricians, and we collaborate with other UI Children’s Hospital specialists, therapists, and other staff as needed—drawing on the research, technology, and expertise available at one of the nation’s best children’s hospitals. We strive to make sure that families are comfortable, informed, and confident about the care their child receives.

Patient Stories

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Jacie Beats Celiac Disease with Rainbow Art

Jacie uses her art to raise awareness for the disease that once had her wheelchair bound. Read more about Jacie’s story.

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Taytum’s Rough Year

Taytum developed a rare autoimmune disease as a child but after a week of in hospital treatment is back to what she loves.Read more about Taytum’s story.

Health Information

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Read more health library articles about pediatric rheumatology


Locations and Contact

Iowa City, Iowa

UI Children's Hospital
Pediatric Specialty Clinic
200 Hawkins Drive, 2400 Colloton Pavilion
Iowa City, Iowa 52242

Parking: Parking and Wayfinding. Valet Services Available
In House Directions: Elevator F, Level 2.


Monday through Friday
8 am-5 pm


  • Appointment: 319-356-2229
  • Emergency: 319-356-1616
  • Toll Free: 888-573-KIDS (5437)

Care Team

Other Team Members


  • Courtney Kremer, ARNP
  • Cathy Figueroa, RN