Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Hand Treatment
There is no cure for rheumatoid arthritis. It is a life long condition. You may experience times when symptoms flare up and times when symptoms are not so bad. Treatments for rheumatoid arthritis of the hand are aimed at reducing pain, improving mobility, increasing function, and preventing further injury. Treatment options include medications, splinting, hand therapy, and surgery. The type of treatment that you receive depends on the severity and extent of the arthritis in your hands. Your activity level and desired outcomes are considered as well.
Over-the-counter or prescription medications may be used to reduce swelling and pain. In some cases, injected medications may be used. Injections are usually combined with joint splinting. Splints are worn during activities to provide support to the joints.
Hand therapy can help reduce pain, swelling, and restore movement. A hand therapist may use modalities, such as warm wax soaks (paraffin bath) or warm water soaks to help ease your pain and improve joint flexibility. Your hand therapist can recommend products you can use at home to make some tasks easier. A hand therapist can also recommend ways to adapt your hand movements during ordinary tasks to protect your joints.
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