Turkish Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2008 , Vol 54 , Num 1

Rheumatoid Arthritis and Disease Modifying Antirheumatic Drugs

Rengin Güzel 1
1 Çukurova Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, Fiziksel Tıp ve Rehabilitasyon Anabilim Dalı, Adana, Türkiye

It has now been well established that in Rheumatoid Arthritis early treatment with disease modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) should be initiated to control the inflammatory activity, structural damage and function. Toxicity of the drugs should be monitored carefully. In cases with insufficient response aggressive treatment options can create a difference so additional strategies should be taken into consideration in time. This review mentions about the more commonly prescribed DMARDs such as methotrexate, sulphasalazine and leflunomide. Practical tips on special situations like pregnancy, lactation and perioperative period are given, first drug choice and combination therapies are summarized.

Keywords : Methotrexate, sulphasalazine, leflunomide, rheumatoid arthritis, DMARD