You are currently browsing the Osteoarthritis Blog blog archives for the day Wednesday, March 26th, 2014.

Calendar

March 2014
M T W T F S S
« Feb   Apr »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31  

Archive for March 26th, 2014

Arthritis Drugs

March 26, 2014
Acetaminophen

Arthritis Drugs

Arthritis drugs are usually what doctors prescribe to treat osteoarthritis.   Since people respond differently to different types of drugs it’s not always easy to predict how the medications will work.  Potential side effects and poor reactions have to be considered.  It’s not easy to find the right combination of drugs and medications to achieve optimum pain relief for any given patient.  If you have arthritis, you should know as much as possible about your treatment options so you can talk about it with your doctor.

NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) are prescribed a lot to treat OA. NSAIDs work by fighting an enzyme called cyclooxygenase (COX). COX comes in two forms: COX-1 and COX-2. NSAIDs can treat COX-1 and COX-2

DMARDs (Disease-Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drugs) can take weeks or months to start providing pain relief.  DMARDs may be slow acting but they work.  They treat conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis.   These drugs can stop the progression of the disease and limit damage to the joints.

Corticosteroids are usually called “steroids”.  These are strong drugs that quickly reduce swelling and inflammation.   Doses can be all over the place depending on what’s being treated and how agressive the treatment plan is.   Harmful side effects are more likely at high doses or with long-term use.

Analgesics relieve pain. However, unlike NSAIDs, they don’t help with inflammation. Acetaminophen is  a common analgesic.