Early diagnosis, referral and initiation of disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD) therapy, along with regular disease monitoring and treating to target, are crucial to give patients with rheumatoid arthritis the best chance of achieving remission.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic systemic autoimmune disease characterised by joint inflammation and functional impairment, and potentially leading to permanent disability and reduced life expectancy. The past decade has seen substantial improvement in patient outcomes, as RA is diagnosed earlier, and disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD) treatments are complemented by biological DMARD (bDMARD) therapies. The ultimate goal of RA treatment is to achieve remission and stop the progression of joint damage. This article will discuss how we can achieve better outcomes in patients with RA.