Bewilderment of Early Aggressive Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis

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Article assures Rheumatoid Arthritis patients of success of early aggressive treatment

For your reading pleasure, I’ve typed up some excerpts from a pdf of the Sarasota Journal February 27 article called “Rheumatoid Arthritis Doesn’t Need to Cripple.” This article had an effect on me. You will see why in a moment.

“Most people with Rheumatoid Arthritis don’t have to be crippled or deformed. This was the key conclusion that came out of a recent meeting of experts in the field.

“The surgeon general’s workshop on prevention of disability of arthritis made a number of recommendations which will lead to better treatment and care of the arthritic patient. As is usually the case, not all the experts agreed on all the recommendations.

“On one point, however, all the authorities agreed: With methods in use right now, early treatment of arthritis can prevent crippling and deformity in most cases…

“You’ve probably seen the woman in her 30’s so crippled by arthritis that she’s confined to a wheel chair or the 40 year old man with arthritis who can just barley hobble around with the aid of canes or crutches…

“They are part of the $3.6 billion drain – in the cost of care and treatment as well as lost wages – that arthritis puts on the American economy each year.

“And the greatest tragedy: chances are that they need not have been crippled at all.

“No matter what you may have heard, most patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis who see their physicians early in the course of their disease can avoid crippling and deformity. Even the relatively few patients more seriously affected can, with proper care, retain enough function in their joints to remain useful human beings.

“But remember: the key is early treatment… If you think you have arthritis, you can save yourself a lot of needless pain by seeing a physician early…”

Is the promise of early aggressive treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis a novel claim?

This article warning people to, in my own words, Get thyself to an RA specialist ASAP, sounds like what we hear all the time: Early and aggressive treatment is the best hope to fight Rheumatoid Arthritis. We may be able to avoid more damage, disability and deformity. What is surreal about this one? It was dated February 27, 1967 – forty-three years ago.

Am I the only one with an odd feeling as I read “part of a $3.6 billion drain” or “they need not have been crippled at all”? What about “the relatively few patients more seriously affected”? I often read similar statements in more current articles, but there’s something bewildering about this. A recent post “Is the Course of Disease for Rheumatoid Arthritis Becoming Milder?” brought out strong feeling from some readers on this subject.

Click here to view the pdf image of the newspaper article called Rheumatoid Arthritis Doesn’t Need to Cripple.

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Kelly Young. All rights reserved.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 20th, 2010 at 9:44 am and is filed under Reality Check. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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