What Should I Take for My Arthritis?

Wednesday, 22 Jan 2014 09:54 AM

By Peter Hibberd, M.D.

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Question: My rheumatologist took me off of the anti-inflammatories I was taking for my rheumatoid arthritis and lupus because he said new research found they are bad for the heart. Is he right?

Dr. Hibberd's answer:
 
Rheumatoid arthritis and lupus are immune disorders that affects many areas of your body, not just your joints. The destruction of joint tissue is permanent in arthritis. Lupus is a devastating condition when not in remission. Once in remission, your anti-inflammatories may not be needed in the same doses previously needed, but almost always some form of treatment is used to maintain remission of these disorders.
 
Without more specifics on the drugs you were on, I cannot comment further except to say that the dangers associated with not properly treating these disorders can have worse consequences than cardiac risks associated with anti-inflammatory use. I suggest you re-consult your rheumatologist, or go to your primary care physician and ask for another opinion.
 
Also ask whether an alternative rheumatology consultation would be advisable for you. You may have reached full remission, and if so, need to have a "battle plan" for treatment.

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