Treating Psoriatic Arthritis
Treatment for psoriatic arthritis can relieve pain, reduce swelling, help keep joints working properly and possibly prevent further joint damage. Doctors will recommend treatments based on the type of psoriatic arthritis, its severity and an individual’s reaction to treatment.
Early diagnosis and treatment can help slow the disease and preserve function and range of motion. Some early indicators of severe disease include onset at a young age, having many joints involved and spinal involvement. Good control of the skin disease may be valuable in the management of psoriatic arthritis. Some treatments are approved to treat both psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.
Drugs for the treatment of psoriatic arthritis are divided into three main categories:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) include over-the-counter medications such as aspirin and ibuprofen as well as prescription products.
- Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) may relieve more severe symptoms and attempt to slow or stop joint/tissue damage and the progression of psoriatic arthritis.
- Biologics such as Enbrel, Humira, and Remicade are also considered DMARDs. They are highly selective agents that target specific parts of the immune system that cause psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.