Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Finding the right treatment for rheumatoid arthritis is imperative for anyone suffering from this condition. I have a friend who was recently diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, and it has really curtailed her activities while she is searching for the best treatment option; fortunately, there is a wide array of options. Before determining the treatment for rheumatoid arthritis, it is very important to understand this condition first. Rheumatoid arthritis (or RA) is a long-term inflammatory disorder that usually affects the small joints in one’s feet and hands. This is a condition that basically affects the joints’ lining, which can usually cause a painful swelling that can eventually lead to joint deformity and bone erosion.
RA is an autoimmune disorder wherein the immune system attacks your cells and tissues. Aside from the fact that it causes joint problems, the condition can sometimes causes an effect in other organs in the body such as lungs, eyes, skin, and blood vessels.
Even though this condition can happen in any gender or age, it usually starts after the age of 40 years, and the condition is typically found in women. When it comes to a cure for rheumatoid arthritis, the medications commonly prescribed could decrease the inflammation in the joints to alleviate pain, or to avert or lessen the joint damage.
There are several medications that are commonly used for treatment of the rheumatoid arthritis condition, and it is important to know that some may have serious side effects. That is why the physician usually recommends medications that have lesser side effects. The patient may require stronger drugs or a mixture of drugs if the condition progresses. Some of the medications that are used to treat the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis are NSAIDs or Nonsteriodal anti-inflammatory drugs, steroids, disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs, biologic agents, and others.
The side effects of these medications may vary according to patient. Some of the possible side effects of this condition are lung infection, bone marrow suppression, liver damage, and other condition. These drugs could trigger reactions in portions of the immune system that can trigger the said inflammation. That is why proper consideration is needed in order to select the best treatment applicable for this condition.
Apart from medications, the doctor can also send the patient to particular physical therapists in order to help the patient acquire the best exercises for keeping the joints flexible. Additionally, the PT may also suggest several activities that you need to do.
The therapy for rheumatoid arthritis may depend on your individual condition as well. Physical therapy and exercise are crucial aspects of treatment and should not be neglected.
Surgery is another option for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, depending on the severity of the condition. It can be an effective method for some cases that cannot be treated with drugs or therapy.
Among the more popular alternative treatments for RA are acupuncture, magnet therapies, meditation, and nutrition/supplements, as well as gentle movement arts such as Tai Chi and Yoga. Any therapy that promotes relaxation and stress relief has the potential to facilitate easier movement of joints and lessening of overall pain.
Choosing the best treatment for rheumatoid arthritis involves many different considerations, and the more self-education you can attain, the more control you will have in finding relief from the symptoms. You have to keep in mind that Western medicine does not consider that these treatment options can completely heal the condition, but rather that treatment can be used in order to gain some relief from the difficult symptoms of this condition. As with any health condition, consult with your primary physician, and do further research regarding whether you wish to pursue any alternative treatments.
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