Methotrexate, Plaquenil and Sulfasalazine are my RA arsenal and are sometimes called triple treatment. I call it Triple Play. These drugs are supported with prednisone and Meloxicam.
I have the leeway of increasing the prednisone to 15 mg for a flare. For the time being my RA Doc prefers to keep me at 7.5 mg on a daily basis.
My hands and wrists are good. My left shoulder has been a problem, but not a big one. My feet and ankles still rebel. My middle toes on each foot are swollen.
I have a minimum (all joints) pain level of three but lately the level has been closer to five. Still, I am functional. I do remember clearly the days of severe pain(I would have to say off the charts. Pain that felt as if all my joints were filled with broken glass).
That pain level is my benchmark for how I am doing. My meds are working. I am much happier.
I do understand that my RA is progressive. I understand that meds frequently only last so long. So as I become established on Sulfasalazine, I am expecting a good run with it before I proceed to the biologics.
I am fortunate to have an excellent RA Doc. With aggressive treatment I have been able to minimize joint damage.
RA is an autoimmune disease. My immune system has become an outlaw. It has caused a persistent attack on my joint lining on all moveable joints throughout my body. It has also caused two random cancers and will probably cause more.
For the time being I am in a cancer rehab program and exercise 5 days a week and I am hopefully building my immune system with diet and supplements.
I do feel lucky to have made it this far. I am finally back to doing some garden work and my RA fog has cleared enough for reading excellent books.