I am sorry that you are in pain and are joining our ranks. I have RA too. I will tell you that the usual course of treatment begins with plaquenil. It takes about 3 months to determine if this medication is helping. If not, they will likely place you on methotrexate (MTX) either in pill or injectable form. If you go on MTX, you must take folic acid. the doctor should prescribe this for you but if they don't, ask for it as MTX will lower your folic acid levels. I recommend going on the injectable form of MTX as it has fewer side effects. It takes another 3 months to determine if this is helping at which point the doc may opt to increase yoru dosage. If you still need something more, the doctor may prescribe Enbrel or Humira. These are both injectables. I have heard wonderful things about them but currently I am not taking them.
The doctor will likely also prescribe Naproxen (an anti-inflamatory) and a perhaps something for the pain.
It takes time to get a treatment that works. I can tell you that while I was waiting to get better I felt like I was getting worse. It took a year to find the right combination of drugs and correct dosages so that I started to feel better. I hope it does not take as long for you!
There are many of us here with RA so post your questions and let us know how you are doing!
I have RA also. I could not get up from a chair and had to use a cane. I could not pick up my drink without both hands. Ultimately, after an allergic reaction to gold, my doctor put me on methotrexate and folic acid. It has been wonderful for me. No joint problems, no cane. I do have to get the blood tested every three months, no problem. I am so grateful. I know different systems react differently to different meds. So I hope you find meds that work for quickly for you. God bless.
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