Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment

There is no cure for rheumatoid arthritis. Treatment and management of this disease is based on the person’s overall health, age, and severity of the disease.

Rheumatoid Arthritis TreatmentA treatment plan will include pharmaceuticals to treat the inflammation, pain, and minimize the damage to the joint.

 

One or more of the following drugs may be prescribed.

 

 Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, NSAIDs, are used to reduce swelling and relieve pain.

Minor cases of rheumatoid arthritis can be treated with over-the-counter ibuprofen or naproxen sodium. 

 

A prescription can be obtained for stronger doses.

Corticosteroids, prednisone and methylprednisolone, are used to treat acute flare symptoms. They are typically used on a short-term basis.

Immunosuppressants are taken to calm the immune system. Azathioprine, cyclosporine, and cyclophosphamide are examples or immunosuppressants.

DMARDs, or disease-modifying anti rheumatic drugs are shown to reduce the advancement of rheumatoid arthritis and prevent irreversible damage to the joints.

  • Methotrexate, leflunomide, minocycline, hydroxychloroquine, and sulfasalazine are all DMARDs. 
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  • Potential side effects with this medication are suppression of the bone marrow, lung infections, and liver damage.

Tumor necrosis factor-alpha inhibitors, TNF-alpha inhibitors, reduce the stiffness, pain, and inflammation of the joints by blocking this inflammatory factor produced by the body. TNF-alpha inhibitors include Enbrel, Humira, and Remicade.

There are serious side effects associated with this medication that include lymphoma, blood disorders, congestive heart failure, and demyelinating diseases.

In addition to medications, physical and occupational therapy are used to manage the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.

 

Therapeutic exercises will encourage full range-of-motion and maintain strength and stability of the joint.

  1. Occupational therapists teach new methods of performing routine activities to minimize stress to painful joints.

 The Alternative Treatment

Studies have shown that some alternative treatments have provided relief for people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis.Rheumatoid Arthritis

Tai Chi

The practice of Tai chi combines gentle stretches, gentle exercises, and deep breathing to develop joint strength and flexibility.

 

 

Supplements

Supplements such as fish oil, thunder god vine root, and plant oils derived from the seeds of black currant, borage, and evening primrose have shown anti-inflammatory properties.

As with any supplement, it is crucial to consult a healthcare provider to avoid adverse drug interactions.