A rheumatologist is the medical professional that you should go to if you think that there is something wrong with your muscles, bones, and joints. Aside from these parts of your body that suffer from certain conditions, arthritis is another specialty of these medical professionals. When it comes to rheumatoid arthritis (RA), people who suffer from this condition will be discussing with this doctor what their rheumatoid arthritis treatment options are.
For these rheumatoid arthritis treatment options, they aim to accomplish similar things for the patient. These treatments are basically aimed at reducing systemic inflammation and symptom duration and severity, modifying the disease process, sending the disease into remission, and improving the patient’s general health.
Most rheumatoid arthritis treatment options aim to treat the disease and aggressively deal with its causes. Even so, patients who get to deal with the debilitating symptoms of RA are entitled to get relief from them.
Treatment of symptoms is something that rheumatologists make sure to offer to their patients. For mild to moderate symptoms of RA like stiffness and joint pain, your doctor will prescribe you with over the counter medications and supplements. These symptoms are often dealt with through the intake of pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs.
The use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen and naproxen are effective for symptoms of low grade. You will not be recommended by your doctor to use them continuously, though, because of their serious side effects with the likes of stomach bleeding. For pain relievers like oxycodone, hydrocodone, and opioids, they are used to treat serious pain.
When inflammation of the synovial membrane of the joint becomes affected by RA, surgery is often indicated. The aim of this surgery is to preserve the joints by extracting the synovial fluid that is inflamed. Discoloration of the synovia is the common indication of inflammation. This is often used to serve as a diagnostic tool for RA. If the RA is still undeveloped, surgery can be the best option for patients, which has a 50% success rate.
Rheumatoid arthritis treatment through surgery is often done on the feet, shoulders, ankles, elbows, and knees. The surgery requires intact cartilage while physical therapy is necessary after the procedure.
Besides pharmacologic and surgical means of treating RA, there are other rheumatoid arthritis treatment options that you can choose from. For RA symptoms, a change in diet and doing more exercises can help you. In terms of your diet, you can avoid grains, dairy, or anything with high fat and protein content. Exercise and living a stress-free life can improve your overall health and immunity. During your recovery periods, just make sure to not do too much exercise. Supplements such as fish oil also help patients suffering from RA. Before taking them, always get the recommendations of your rheumatologist first.