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Table 2 The advantages and disadvantages of disease modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) therapy as perceived by patients

From: “Living a normal life”: a qualitative study of patients’ views of medication withdrawal in rheumatoid arthritis

Advantages of DMARDs Disadvantages of DMARDs
Alleviation of physical symptoms of RA (i.e. pain, swelling and stiffness) Side-effects of medication
Maintain mobility:
1. For everyday physical functions
2. For employment
Practical issues with taking medication:
1. Extra appointments for blood monitoring tests
2. Ordering and taking tablets
3. Difficulties in transporting medication abroad
Prevent future deterioration and deformity Complication of healthcare provided by non-rheumatology specialists