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Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) are prescribed for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) to treat the underlying disease and prevent joint damage. It typically takes 6-12 weeks to see a response from DMARDs, which work by blocking inflammation and slowing down the disease process. Methotrexate is usually the first DMARD prescribed, while leflunomide and methotrexate take the longest to reach full effectiveness. Biologic DMARDs typically work faster, with some showing benefits within a month. The goal of treatment is remission, which can be achieved in 60-75% of cases, but finding the most effective medication may require trying multiple options.

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