Treatments for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Although there is no cure for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), most symptoms can be managed with a combination of lifestyle changes and medications. If these don't work, or if RA is affecting quality of life, surgery may be an option. The earlier RA is detected and treated, the better it can be controlled.The goals of treatment for RA include:

  • Pain relief
  • Maintaining the greatest possible mobility and function
  • Decreasing joint deformity
  • Maintaining or improving quality of life
RA is different in everyone. Working with a healthcare team that is made up of doctors, surgeons, nurses, pharmacists, and other health professionals is important to help find the treatments that works best for each person.RA treatment involves the following:Lifestyle changesMedicationsSurgeryAlternative and complementary therapiesOther treatments


Handout on health: Rheumatoid arthritis. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseaseswebsite. Available at: Updated August 2014. Accessed October 31, 2014.

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