Dr Harsha Gunawardena

Consultant Rheumatologist


I qualified from Bristol University, and then worked in Bristol and Australia. I dual trained in Rheumatology and General Medicine on the South West training rotation. With a view to specialise in autoimmune connective tissue disease and vasculitis I undertook a clinical research fellowship under the mentorship of Professor Neil McHugh at the Royal National Hospital of Rheumatic Diseases in Bath. I was subsequently awarded an Arthritis Research UK Research Fellowship in Paediatric Rheumatology to research immunological aspects of juvenile dermatomyositis with the UK Juvenile Myositis Research Group. This combined with collaborative studies with the UK Adult Myositis Research Network led to my PhD thesis Clinical and serological study of adult and juvenile myositis.

I continue to have a major academic interest in connective tissue disease and myositis. I am on the UK Myositis Network Steering committee, scientific advisor to the UK Juvenile Myositis Research Group, in addition to other UK connective tissue disease study groups. I am widely published in major international rheumatology journals, and have written several invited myositis review articles. I have spoken at several international meetings including the American College of Rheumatology Annual Congress (2010) and the European Science Foundation Myositis Workshop (2011).

As a NHS Consultant I run both General Rheumatology and Autoimmune Connective Tissue Disease Clinics at North Bristol NHS Trust. I look after patients with all forms of inflammatory arthritis including rheumatoid arthritis. I am the lead Consultant for Connective Tissue Disease and Vasculitis for the Rheumatology Department, and I am fully experienced in using novel immunomodulatory treatments including biologic therapy for these complex conditions.

My clinic is open on a Tuesday evening.


Treatment information

Some of the principal treatments carried out by Dr Harsha Gunawardena at Spire include:


Other treatments

Rheumatology: Connective Tissue Disease

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Additional information

Connective tissue disease

Special clinical interests: General Rheumatology including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, spondyloarthropathy, gout/pseudogout, osteoarthritis, inflammatory muscle diseases including polymyositis, dermatomyositis, systemic sclerosis (scleroderma), systemic lupus erythematosus, Sjogren's syndrome, mixed connective tissue disease, antiphospholipid syndrome, vasculitis including Wegener's granulomatosis, Churg Strauss, polyarteritis nodosa, microscopic polyangiitis. Interstitial lung disease associated with connective tissue disease. Immunology (diagnostic autoantibody testing and interpretation).

Consultant Rheumatologist and Lead Consultant Connective Tissue Diseases, North Bristol NHS Trust.

I am married to Ana and we have three little boys who keep us happily very busy. We love travelling to see our respective families in Sri Lanka and Argentina. You will often find me running around the Downs training for 10K and half marathons, although my marathon running days are over! I am also a keen road cyclist, and love cricket and golf with my boys.

Telephone 0117 414 5140
Private secretary Caroline Reed
Private secretary telephone 0117 414 5140
Private secretary email caroline.reed@nbt.nhs.uk