Most forms of rheumatic diseases cannot be cured. However, many treatments can reduce pain and stiffness and improve ability to function.
Brigham and Women's Hospital, a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School, has provided a guide to making good decisions about arthritis treatment.
The guide gives concrete suggestions on how to ask good questions and explains why most people find it difficult to ask questions. In addition, a worksheet is provided that allows patients and their families to evaluate treatment options.
Brigham and Women's Hospital is a comprehensive center, combining activities in rheumatic disease clinical care, education, training and research as an "integrated series of successful cutting-edge programs." The professionals in comprehensive arthritis care work closely with colleagues in orthopedics, radiology, physical therapy, neurology, podiatry, dermatology, and pain management.
It's a great resource whether or not you live in the Boston area.