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Have osteo and rheumatoid arthritis. Taking oxycontin, panadol, celebrex. Any other medicine?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1998
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Hi, I have been diagnosed by my GP as having both osteo & rheum. arthritis. Affected joints are both shoulders,right knee, left hip & deviating fingers on both hands.Have been on OxycontinSR - 50mg.for over a year and is having little effect.Also on Panadol Osteo which does help on maximum dosage, but leaves me off-colour.I use Celebrex when desperate, but GP says will wreck my kidneys.However, not much of a life the way I am ! Can you suggest any other drug, and would a phisio. help or waste of money ? Am 80 yo. but in good order otherwise. Have always been active prior to this, Regards,--XXXXXX
Posted Wed, 15 May 2013 in Arthritis
Answered by Dr. Pankaj Malhan 38 minutes later

Thanks for your question.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease that results in a chronic, systemic inflammatory disorder that may affect many tissues and organs, but principally attacks flexible (synovial) joints. It can be a disabling and painful condition, which can lead to substantial loss of functioning and mobility if not adequately treated.

To get to the diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis, you need to undergo some special investigations like RA factor, ESR, C reactive proteins, and now a days more specific blood marker which test for the presence of the anti-citrullinated protein antibodies (ACPAs) or anti-CCP has been used.

Once the diagnosis is confirmed, the treatment is divided into two parts.

1.Disease modifying anti rheumatic Drugs ( DMARD) - Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) are the primary treatment for RA. They have been found to improve symptomatic, decrease joint damage, and improve overall functional abilities. They should be started very early in the disease as when they result in disease remission in approximately half of people and improved outcomes overall.

The most commonly used agent is methotrexate with other frequently used agents including sulfasalazine and leflunomide. Sodium aurothiomalate (Gold) and cyclosporin are less commonly used due to more common adverse effects. Agents may be used in combinations.

2. Pain relief

As in your case, there is no disease modifying drug being used, I wonder whether it is the time to go and see a Rheumatologist.

Just taking oxycontin, celebrex or panadol for pain is not going to stop the progression of the rheumatoid arthritis. Also physiotherapy can help a great deal, but only in association with proper medication.

I hope I have answered your query, I am available for follow up questions if needed.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Have osteo and rheumatoid arthritis. Taking oxycontin, panadol, celebrex. Any other medicine? 3 days later
Very happy with your reply - just what I needed - confirmation.
Have booked appointment wth a rheumatologist but can't see till early July !

You sound a very learned doctor.
Thank you'
Answered by Dr. Pankaj Malhan 11 minutes later
Thanks for the feedback. You can always ask me directly on
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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