Advances in the medical treatment of rheumatoid arthritis

Hand Clin. 2011 Feb;27(1):11-20. doi: 10.1016/j.hcl.2010.09.002.


Over the past 2 decades, the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has been revolutionized by advances in the understanding of its pathologic mechanisms and the development of drugs that target them. These newer medications have shown great promise at improving disease outcomes, but they come with notable side effects that can pose long-term treatment challenges and difficulties in the perioperative arena. In this article, the major manifestations of RA and the current medical options for management are discussed. Complications from treatment are then reviewed, and special consideration is given to perioperative medication recommendations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antirheumatic Agents / adverse effects
  • Antirheumatic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / complications
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / drug therapy*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / therapy
  • Humans


  • Antirheumatic Agents