My mother-in-law was diagnosed with RA a few years ago. For a while she was self-medicating with illegal substances and alcohol and now her RA is so bad that she can not walk or even stand anymore. Her illness progressed to this level within little over a year. My question is…Did her RA progress so very quickly because of the drugs and alcohol?
Lack of proper rheumatologic care, lack of early use of disease modifying agents (methotrexate, anti-TNF agents, etc) and poor overall health, all are major contributors to poor outcomes and increased disability from RA.