The internet is a great source of information on all topics and Googling Arava will through up many results - some positive, some negative. There are a huge number of reviews online by users and professionals alike - some reviewing experiences, knowledge or promoting the product itself.
Where do you go to get reliable information about Arava online?
How reliable is the information online about Arava or any other drug for that matter? There are a number of respected medical sites that review many drugs on an impartial, professional basis. The reviews are generally done by qualified professionals, be they doctors, pharmacists or other health specialists. You should also remember that for a drug to be marketed in the US, it has to pass stringent tests and research trials before being granted FDA approval, and details on that approval are available on the FDA website.
Because of the problems caused by living with rheumatoid arthritis, most people with the condition will at some stage be taking medication of one description or another to deal with the pain and reduce swelling associated with the condition. Medication for rheumatoid arthritis can be divided into two categories:
1. Symptom Relievers. Used to help relieve pain and swelling, these include the following:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin and ibuprofen
- COX-2 inhibitor NSAIDs
2. Disease Modifiers. These drugs, known as disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs), not only help relieve pain and swelling, but they also help slow the progression of RA.
Arava slows the progression of rheumatoid arthritis and because of this is classified as a DMARD. Arava helps relieve the pain and swelling in the joints caused by rheumatoid arthritis. So, while there is no cure for rheumatoid arthritis, it is possible you can do something to help prevent it from getting worse.
There are issues with Arava around loading dose levels in patients, particularly those at risk of hematologic or hepatic toxicity. Managing the initial loading dosage is something you should take very seriously and consult with your doctor.
So why are there Negative reviews of Arava online and what should I do about it?
The negative publicity you will find online about Arava is related to the potential side effects of using Arava. In the past there have been situations where Arava was used incorrectly and this has lead to problems.
This is the manufacturer's own warnings in relation to the use of Arava:
"Pregnancy must be excluded before the start of treatment with Arava. Arava is contraindicated in pregnant women, or women of childbearing potential who are not using reliable contraception. (see contraindications and warnings). Pregnancy must be avoided during Arava treatment or prior to the completion of the drug elimination procedure after Arava treatment."
As with many treatments, there are a number of conditions that are incompatible with Arava. If you are considering using treatment with Arava, make sure you undergo thorough medical examination so that you make sure you don't have any of the conditions that could cause you issues. You may not even know you have them so it si best to get checked out first and keep those risks as low as possible. Also make sure you are regularly checked by your doctor.
Other common complaints or side effects include skin problems such as dermatitis, acne and rashes, respiratory problems such as cough, pneumonia and respiratory infections or endocrine deficiencies related to the thyroid and the pancreatic functions. Arava, like most drugs, have these issues and it is important that you understand the risks associated with using it. That information is freely available online or from your medical professional.
So make sure you understand the risks, and weigh them up against the potential benefits - make sure you take the advice of a trusted professional and keep your risk factors to a minimum.