No pain killer I have ever taken has ever touched the agony during a flare, nor has it ever enabled me to use that specific joint or joints until the flare subsides. One particular day over 20 joints for about 14 hours, sobbed a lot that day. Not because of the pain but thinking "is this it" is this the life I have in front of me ... a few months ago I found "my" answer.
Had RA getting on for 3 years now, I have had a mixture of most of the RA drugs often mentioned here, its all about finding that "right balance" and as we know this can take months or often years for some.
From day one my "main" drug has always been Prednisolone, taken in tablet form (no injections ever offered) seems to be quite the norm for lots in here.
I started on 20mg, I stayed on that dose for ages then one day I was seen by a different doctor at my local surgery, he said, "wow!, you cannot keep taking this drug at such a high dosage", he explained the pitfalls of Prednisolone
I am down to 7mg now but, and here is "my" answer (and my doctor is ok with it too) When I know a flare is coming I just take 10/15mg, within 1 hour it kicks in, I may need to do it for 2/3 days until the flares subside, then I go back to 7mg and all is well.
Now I know "my" RA's Achilles heal, I no longer have to take any anti- depressant's too.
As I have said from the start, its my answer to RA, everybody is different as we all know ...