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Rheumatoid Prevention & Treatments

Rheumatoid arthritis is a form of arthritis that can cause inflammation, swelling, and stiffness in joints and other parts of the body.[1] The disorder is chronic and systemic, affecting mainly flexible joints and causing pain and swelling. It is typically experienced chronically, with periodic flareups and remissions. The disorder can affect people of any age, and the precise cause of this type of arthritis is currently unknown.

Rheumatoid arthritis treatment is designed not to cure the disease, but to help alleviate symptoms like pain, swelling, and inflammation. Typically, arthritis medication is prescribed whenever there are flareups of symptoms. One of the most common types of rheumatoid arthritis medication is corticosteroids that help reduce inflammation. Corticosteroids can administered orally, or by inhaling, applied to the skin, or through an injection. Patients usually see temporary relief from their symptoms with this type of medication.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms

The symptoms of this type of arthritis can appear and disappear, dependant upon how much tissue inflammation is present. The disease is considered to be active when inflammation appears in body tissues. It is considered to be in remission when the inflammation is reduced. A remission can happen on its own or in response to treatment. Remission periods are variable — they can last days, weeks, months, or even years. During a remission period, disease symptoms go away and people usually feel well. A relapse is when symptoms return.[2]

During active periods, arthritis symptoms can include loss of energy, fatigue, fever, muscle and joint aches, lack of appetite, and joint and muscle stiffness. The stiffness is typically most apparent in the morning and after times of inactivity. During flareups, joints can become red, painful, swollen, and very tender. This happens because the lining of the joints becomes inflamed, which causes the joint to fill with synovial or joint fluid.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment

Currently, there is no cure available for rheumatoid arthritis. Treatment focuses on relieving symptoms like joint pain and inflammation, preventing the destruction and deformity of joints, and maximizing joint flexibility. The earlier the disease is diagnosed, the more successful treatment tends to be for most patients.

Rheumatoid arthritis treatment typically involves a mixture of rheumatoid arthritis medication, rest, joint protection, patient education, and exercises to strengthen the joints. Treatments are tailored individually based upon things like the types of joints affected, age, general health, patient occupation, and disease activity. Patients with the best outcomes tend to be those who cooperate most closely with the doctor.

There are two forms of rheumatoid arthritis medication available. These are those that act quickly and those that act more slowly. Rheumatoid arthritis medication helps reduce inflammation and pain. It can also help prevent joints from being destroyed and deformed.

Another type of rheumatoid arthritis treatment involves the use of various over-the-counter products that reduce inflammation, like glucosamine chondroitin. Many patients have experienced significant relief with this product. It seems to work by maintaining and rebuilding cartilege that helps cushion the impact on joints.



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