Rheumatoid arthritis treatment goals.

The American College of Rheumatology suggests certain goals in managing rheumatoid arthritis (RA). They are to prevent or control joint damage, prevent loss of function, and decrease pain. Your rheumatologist should be familiar with the approaches used to help reach these goals, including the various RA medications.

Rheumatoid arthritis treatment options are available.

Rheumatologist and Patient

A number of RA remedies and approaches can help with these goals, including physical and occupational therapy, exercise, and medications.

Some of these medications are used for the purpose of pain relief only (analgesics) and others are used to reduce joint inflammation (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, and corticosteroids).

One class of prescription medicines used to treat RA are called DMARDs or Disease-Modifying Antirheumatic Drugs. For people with moderately to severely active RA, biologic DMARDs (biologics) may be an option. Biologics are used to treat the pain and swelling of RA, but some may also help prevent further joint damage. Talk with your doctor about the risks and benefits of your treatment options.

Rheumatologist Locator

To get an accurate and timely diagnosis and discuss an appropriate treatment plan, speak with a rheumatologist, a doctor who specializes in the management of diseases like rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

Find a rheumatologist near you with our helpful online locator.

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