Question: What Is The Best Way To Treat Pain Associated With Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Answer: Medically, there are a variety of medicines that we use to treat the pain of rheumatoid arthritis. Pure, what we call analgesics, include things like Tylenol or acetaminophen, narcotic medications, some medications that alter nerve transmission, and then what we call NSAIDs, or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs; the most famous of these is aspirin, but it includes Ibuprofen and a variety of other drugs -- naproxen, and other anti-inflammatories. These are drugs that are very familiar to a lot of people.
In addition, we often use corticosteroids like Prednisone in short bursts, but we try not to use any more of that than we have to due to the side effects.
And then there's a group of drugs called disease-modifying drugs, and this includes what used to be the most common one was gold shots; currently, methotrexate is the most common one that we use. And then a variety of what we call biologics, these are newer drugs given either intravenously or under the skin, and can really do wonders in terms of preventing further damage, and stopping the inflammation that causes the pain and discomfort.