Differential therapy in early and late stages of rheumatoid arthritis

Curr Opin Rheumatol. 1996 May;8(3):226-9. doi: 10.1097/00002281-199605000-00010.


Early and late stages of rheumatoid arthritis differ with respect to the severity of inflammation and the progression rate of irreversible joint destruction. There are no solid data showing that disease mechanisms underlying destructive arthritis differ between the various stages of the disease. Long-term observational studies have shown that rheumatoid arthritis is a severe progressive disease in many patients, highlighting the need for new therapeutic strategies. At present many centers are exploring whether early and aggressive treatment can improve long-term morbidity and mortality.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Time Factors