2024 Volume 63 Issue 1 Pages 25-29
Medical advances in childhood-onset chronic diseases (CCDs) have significantly improved the prognosis of these diseases; however, they have also resulted in an increase in the number of cases requiring continued medical care in adulthood. The transition from the pediatric to adult healthcare system has recently received worldwide attention. In Japan, in the last decade, there has been a growing awareness of the transition to adult health care in each specialized chronic disease area with a childhood onset. This review focuses on transitional care in pediatric rheumatology, a CCD. Non-pediatric rheumatology departments, such as rheumatology and orthopedics, are potential counterparts for accepting pediatric rheumatology patients; however, several challenges must be met for a seamless transition to adult care. The characteristics of pediatric rheumatic diseases, which are rarer than non-pediatric rheumatic diseases, and the status and problems in transition will be outlined. The mission of pediatricians is not only to follow up diseases but also to support patients' independence. All medical staff and multidisciplinary professionals must cooperate toward this new goal.