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Treatment Options for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Have you ever experienced the silent pain of your joints crying out for relief? Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) can do that to you!

RA is a chronic disease where the body’s immune system attacks the joints, leading to inflammation, swelling, pain, and bone damage. But what are the nonsurgical treatment options for rheumatoid arthritis?

Let’s go deep and learn about these nonsurgical treatment options to help you make the right decision at the right time.

What is Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)?

What is rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic condition where your immune system mistakenly attacks various parts of your body, not just your joints. Unlike osteoarthritis, which results from wear and tear, rheumatoid arthritis causes painful swelling in your joint lining, leading to bone erosion and deformity.

This inflammation can also harm other body systems like the skin, eyes, lungs, heart, and blood vessels. Though newer medications have made treatment better, severe cases can still cause physical disabilities.

At what age does rheumatoid arthritis usually begin?

At what age does rheumatoid arthritis usually begin

Rheumatoid arthritis can affect people of any age.

  • Rheumatoid arthritis usually develops between the ages of 30 and 60.
  • Young-onset rheumatoid arthritis (YORA) is a condition that affects children and young adults aged 16 to 40.
  • Later-onset rheumatoid arthritis (LORA) relates to symptoms that occur once you cross 60 years.

What are the Non Surgical Treatment options for Rheumatoid Arthritis?

what are the non surgical treatment options for rheumatoid arthritis

Many people turn to joint replacement surgery as a popular option for relieving the discomfort and limited mobility caused by joint inflammation.

However, for those who are part of the large population of adults dealing with rheumatoid arthritis, it’s essential to understand that surgery is not the only available choice.

Non-surgical care, or non-operative treatment, involves seeking medical assistance without surgery. This approach includes physical therapy, pain management, and orthobiologics to reduce discomfort and enhance movement, without the risks and costs of surgery.

It’s crucial to adopt healthy eating habits, manage stress, and exercise regularly for overall well-being.

Learning self-management strategies can provide peace of mind, offering valuable alternatives to surgery. Discuss these options with your doctor during your initial consultation.

Here are non-surgical options for managing rheumatoid arthritis.

1. Drug Therapy for Rheumatoid Arthritis:

Medications can prove highly effective in addressing the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis during its initial stages. They offer relief from both pain and inflammation. 

Additionally, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help control inflammation caused by rheumatoid arthritis.

Disease-modifying antirheumatic Drugs (DMARDs):

For RA, the initial medication often recommended is a type of drug known as conventional synthetic DMARDs

Primarily, methotrexate helps to slow down disease activity. Other DMARDs used in RA treatment include hydroxychloroquine, sulfasalazine, and leflunomide. In rare cases, your doctor may prescribe a combination of two or more DMARDs.


Biologics are distinct proteins engineered to target specific parts of the immune system responsible for inflammation.

They come into play when conventional DMARDs prove insufficient. The Different biologics function in diverse ways within the body, allowing for flexibility. Given through injection or infusion, they offer an alternative approach.

Janus kinase (JAK) Inhibitors

The latest addition to rheumatoid arthritis treatment is the JAK inhibitors. These inhibitors block specific enzymes involved in cell signaling (a process where the cells communicate with each other). It contributes to the inflammatory and immune responses seen in RA. 

Tofacitinib (Xeljanz), baricitinib (Olumiant), and upadacitinib (Rinvoq) are the currently available JAK inhibitors taken orally.


If NSAIDs aren’t suitable for you, the next option is Analgesics. The dosage of acetaminophen acts as a pain reliever to manage discomfort. 

It’s essential to note it eases pain only but doesn’t have anti-inflammatory properties.


Corticosteroid medications act as potent anti-inflammatories by stimulating the body’s corticosteroids. 

Your doctor might prescribe oral corticosteroids to address immediate inflammation. Corticosteroid medications, like Prednisone, are sometimes used to ease inflammation and prevent joint damage in RA. While Prednisone can be helpful for instant relief, it comes with risks when used over the long term. 

Every medication carries potential risks and side effects. Talk to your doctor about any worries and know what to do if you have side effects.

2. Physical Therapy and Exercise for Rheumatoid Arthritis:

A vital element of your rheumatoid arthritis treatment plan is physical therapy and regular exercise. It helps keep your joints flexible and builds up muscles that support them.

Physical Therapy (PT)

A certified therapist has the expertise to apply targeted pressure to your body. They can customize a program to improve your strength and mobility.

An orthopedic specialist can deliver superior care for your neck, back, shoulders, knees, and other joints compared to a general therapist. A PT can offer valuable advice on movement techniques that promote well-being and prevent injuries. 

In addition to their expertise in pain relief methods, a PT can guide splints or braces to offer extra support for your joints.

Do-It-Yourself Workout Routines

Aside from following exercises recommended by a physical therapist, there are many activities you can engage in. These activities can help you improve joint mobility, increase muscle strength, promote cardiovascular health, and enhance overall well-being. 

Discovering activities that bring you joy to your routine is crucial. For people with RA, there are several safe exercise options available. These include walking, swimming, water exercises, low-impact aerobics, and stationary cycling.

3. Seek Medical Advice

Before embarking on any new exercise plan, it’s vital to consult with your doctor. They can offer advice tailored to the specific joints impacted, the severity of your condition, and your individual preferences. This ensures the chosen exercises are enjoyable and safe for your unique situation.

Always prioritize your well-being by engaging in activities to promote good health and minimize potential risks. These steps will help you manage the RA symptoms and enhance overall health.

Living with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) involves more than medications and therapy. 

Here are practical steps you can take to empower yourself and enhance your health:

4. Be Proactive

Actively engage in your treatment decisions and become a self-manager.

Assemble a healthcare team you trust. Your primary point of contact for RA treatment is MedicoExpert. We specialize in autoimmune diseases and will guide your overall treatment plan.

Maintain a record of your symptoms, medications, side effects, and pain levels. Ensure you have regular check-ups and stay current with immunizations. Don’t hesitate to share any concerns or questions with your healthcare team.

5. Quit Smoking

If you smoke, consider quitting. Smoking can worsen inflammation and hinder RA control. Research indicates it may affect treatment response, making RA more challenging to manage.

Public health campaigns play a crucial role in educating the public about the risks associated with smoking. By implementing these measures, we can potentially decrease the incidence of RA patients. 

6. Prioritize Emotional Wellness

Coping with a chronic disease like RA can bring feelings of sadness, worry, stress, or anxiety. It is essential to understand inflammation associated with RA may contribute to depression.

Stress can contribute to the occurrence of rheumatoid arthritis. Effectively managing your stress can not only reduce the discomfort, but it may also help prevent future symptoms from taking place.

No matter what is causing your stress, the initial step is to increase your awareness of it. Take control of the situation in real-time, create effective long-term strategies, and manage it. 

7. Communicate with Your Partner

Having difficulty moving, especially in the hip, can affect intimacy. It’s essential to talk openly with your partner about these challenges. 

Sharing your feelings and concerns will help you understand and find solutions together. Communication is a mode to maintain a close connection despite physical limitations. 

By discussing openly, you can work together to adapt and ensure a fulfilling and supportive relationship.

8. Make Workplace Accommodations

Whether working from home or at the office, simplify your workspace for comfort. Do not perform strenuous activities or stay in one position for too long. 

Your computer screen should be at eye level to keep a good posture. Using cushions for back support can help reduce discomfort. Pace yourself and take breaks to ensure a healthier and more manageable work routine.

9. Eat Non-Inflammatory Foods

Recognizing the importance of a healthy diet is essential for good health. Just like certain foods can help build a strong body, many also contribute to maintaining it, particularly when maintaining your joints healthy.

Including fish, nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables, olive oil, beans, and whole grains in your diet provides a double benefit. In addition to reducing inflammation, a balanced and nutritious meal plan can also aid in weight management, which may reduce strain on your joints. 

This dietary approach enhances joint health, allowing you to lead a more active and comfortable lifestyle.

What are the New Innovative treatment options for rheumatoid arthritis?

New Innovative treatment options for rheumatoid arthritis

The evolving field of rheumatology has brought forth promising approaches to enhance the efficacy of RA treatment. 

Let’s explore some new cutting-edge options that are gaining attention in the medical community.

a. Digital Health Solutions

Digital health tools such as mobile apps and wearable devices are adding to transforming RA management. 

These technologies help individuals track symptoms, medication adherence, and physical activity, providing valuable data for both patients and healthcare providers to make informed decisions about treatment adjustments.

b. Using Heat and Cold to Treatment – Thermotherapy 

When dealing with rheumatoid arthritis outbreaks, there are simple and secure ways from the comfort of your own home to alleviate joint symptoms. 

It is worth mentioning heat and cold therapy is referred to as thermotherapy in medical research.

Using a warm or cold compress can be a helpful way to reduce the pain, swelling, and stiffness associated with RA. This approach works because temperature changes affect inflammation, blood flow, and nerve sensations.

This treatment may provide some relief to the affected joints. It relieves joint pain but does not improve rheumatoid arthritis activity or discomfort elsewhere.

c. Stem Cell Therapy

Utilizing stem cells derived from the body and injecting them into affected joints can enhance the body’s natural healing process. This non-surgical treatment facilitates the regeneration of cartilage tissue.

Rheumatoid arthritis has the potential to affect multiple organs within the body. Stem cell therapy for rheumatoid arthritis in India provides a suitable solution for this condition.

In the context of RA, this therapy aims to reduce inflammation and promote joint healing. 

d. Radiofrequency Energy

FDA-approved Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) technique uses heat to destroy the nerve area, stopping it from sending pain messages to the brain.

RFA can provide lasting relief for people dealing with chronic pain, especially in areas such as the lower back, neck, and arthritic joints.


rheumatoid arthritis

Currently, there is no known cure for RA, and the timeline for a possible future cure is still uncertain. People suffering from RA may control their discomfort and prevent joint deterioration with a mix of medicine and physiotherapy.

There is ongoing research on a variety of emerging therapies for RA. These advancements strive to not only address RA but also to attain remission. 

If you are exploring innovative options to alleviate rheumatoid arthritis pain, consider scheduling an appointment online or by phone with the MedicoExperts Team.

By incorporating MedicoExperts into your healthcare team, you acquire a valuable online resource that enhances the knowledge of your medical professionals. Working together, we ensure a holistic strategy for handling your RA and improve your complete health.

Connect with the MedicoExperts team of arthritis today!

FAQ’s :

Q1. What’s the safest drug for RA?

A. Safety depends on individual health, but DMARDs are often considered safe for long-term use.

Q2. What is the permanent solution for rheumatoid arthritis?

A. Currently, there is no known permanent cure for rheumatoid arthritis. Advances in research may bring about more effective therapies.

Q3. How can MedicoExperts assist with RA?

A. MedicoExperts offers expert guidance, treatment options, and personalized care for those dealing with rheumatoid arthritis.

Q4. How is RA diagnosed?

A. Diagnosis involves a combination of physical exams, blood tests, imaging, and assessing symptoms.

Q5. Can RA affect other parts of the body?

A. Yes, RA can impact skin, eyes, lungs, heart, and other organs besides joints.



Author: Dr. Khushbu Jain

Dr. Khushbu Jain is a dedicated professional with a passion for advancing healthcare through cutting-edge treatments. She has a special interest in researching regenerative medicine and advanced treatment for diseases that are difficult to treat with conventional treatment options. Her deep understanding of these progressive treatments allows her to offer patients personalized and effective solutions for a variety of health concerns.

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