I was diagnosed with RA last year. I can tell you from the worst experience and pain that I went through. I was clueless about this disease when I first got it. Dr gave me Methotraxate and Prenisone but these damn drugs made the pain worse and she tried to give me biologic. but after I searched the side effects of all these drugs, I opted out and never came back to the that doctor. I looked for alternative way to treat RA naturally. Lucky for me, I found a doctor in Vietnam. She explained that any disease that related to bones and joins is all coming from weak liver and kidneys. As liver and kidneys are weak, they cannot filter all the toxin in the body. All this toxin then recirculated back to the system. When the toxin accumulates high enough it will deposit at all the joints. Now the immune system is in high gear to fight this toxin, all the soft tissues at the joints are accidentally destroyed by this attacks. The more the cells die the more toxin created. Meanwhile the liver and kidneys are overwhelmed with more toxin then the unfiltered toxin will deposit at other joints.
I tried my best to explain this in a simple terms so you can get the idea of the full cycle of this so call "autoimmune disease"
All the current western drugs to treat RA are immune system suppression drugs. Which doesn't address the root cause which I mentioned above. If patient stop these drugs, the pain will come back with avenger. Beside if using Prenisone for a long time, the adrenal gland will go into sleep mode or worst it will shut down. This will put patient into a drug dependent mode which all big pharmar love.
Back to my story, after several weeks into Methotraxate and prednisone I dropped MTX and weaned off Prednisone very slowly. The medicine I took are Vietnamese medicine which help to detox liver, kidneys;MSM, vitamin D (very high dose).
I cut off all meat, seafood. My diet was steam rice and steam vegetables. I tried to eat a lot in the morning, little bit less at lunch and very light at dinner so the liver can have a chance to detox. I quit alcohol of any kind. Just spring water and juices.
For temporary pain relief, I took very hot Epsom Salt bath before sleep. Went to sleep early (around 8 - 9pm) and woke up before 6 because this is the best hours in the day for adrenal glands to work. Which more natural cortisone can be produced.
After 4 months taking Vietnamese med, I was 98% better which was July 2017. Now I'm back to normal. Since then I pay more attention to my health, I did 3 liver flushes. In couple weeks I will do my 4th.
I hope this will help your friend. It's very nice for her to have friend like you. I wish her the best