Hello imjustnextdoor and thank you for the question.
Firstly, the information I am giving you here is not meant to be a
substitute for professional medical advice, and you should consult
your doctor/health care provider for advice and treatment. The
information I have given below is as a result of my researcher skills
and not as a medical professional.
From my research it seems that because of the potential seriousness of
this condition, steroid therapy is usually started immediatly and
there are no alternative therapies available (yet) However having
said that, I did find one clinical trial which you might want to talk
to your doctor/health care provider about.
It seems from my research that treatment of temporal arteritis is
usually started with steroids, such as prednisone (steroid). I found
only one clinical study that had used a combination of steriods and
methotrexate (a non steroid drug) Thereby reducing the potential side
effects of steroid treatment:
(Please note that this study was carried out last year and there may
or may not have been further developments regarding this potential
treatment. Consult your doctor/health care provider for his/her
Combined Treatment of Giant-Cell Arteritis with Methotrexate and
A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial
The conclusion of the trials:
In conclusion, therapy with methotrexate plus corticosteroids is a
safe alternative to corticosteroid therapy alone in patients with
giant-cell arteritis and is more effective in controlling disease than
standard corticosteroid therapy. Methotrexate plus prednisone was also
more efficient than prednisone alone in maintaining disease remission.
When disease relapses occurred, they were clinically less severe and
prednisone requirements were lower. Further studies should be directed
toward establishment of criteria for optimum individualized doses of
corticosteroid and methotrexate in an attempt to reduce adverse events
without sacrificing disease control.
Please find below more information regarding temporal arteritis and
Temporal arteritis: the condition known as temporal arteritis is also
called cerebral arteritis, cranial arteritis, giant cell arteritis and
sometimes granulomatous arteritis. It is associated with painful
inflammation of the blood vessels (arteries) of the head; the temples
are often tender to the touch and headaches are common. It can often
occur with polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR). It is a form of vasculitis of
unknown aetiology, predominantly affecting people aged 50+, with a
higher incidence in women.
. Because of the high incidence of blindness in untreated cases,
steroid therapy should be started immediately rather than waiting for
What is the treatment?
The goal is to decrease the immune system's production of antibodies,
usually with medications called steroids. Steroids, such as
prednisone, stop inflammation. While you will notice some improvement
within 24 hours, most patients need to take the medication for at
least two years to relieve symptoms until the disease has run its
course. Steroids are not a cure for temporal arteritis, but symptoms
usually do not return if you follow the full course of treatment. The
medication is slowly reduced, never stopped suddenly. During your
treatment, your doctor will continue to order blood tests to monitor
the disease. Most patients can be successfully treated and avoid
blindness. Your doctor may also prescribe nonsteroidal
anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for any muscle aches.
Sometimes nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are
prescribed for muscle aches or headaches, especially while steroid
doses are being reduced.
Treatment of this condition is highly effective but involves the use
of high doses of prednisone. Prednisone is usually required for at
least one year, albeit at lower, more acceptable doses. Because of the
potential side effects of prednisone, including osteoporosis,
acceleration of cataracts, diabetes, and hypertension, it is mandatory
that the diagnosis be confirmed before chronic therapy is continued.
The best way of having a diagnosis confirmed is to see a physician who
is experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of rheumatic diseases.
I hope you find the information I have returned useful and if you have
any questions regarding my answer, please do not hesitate to ask for
Best wishes to you, and to your mother for a speedy and safe recovery.
Serach srategy included:
"temporal arteritis" alternative