DMARDs, or disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs, may take 6-12 weeks to show effectiveness in treating rheumatoid arthritis, according to Dr. Eric M. Ruderman, a rheumatologist at Northwestern Medicine Rheumatology. DMARDs, which were once a secondary treatment option, are now prescribed at the onset of diagnosis due to their abilities to block inflammation and slow the disease’s progression, potentially leading to remission in the long term. They may also prevent future joint damage. However, as they don’t cure the disease, patients typically continue taking the medication long term.
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